American Playhouse (1981– )
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Fifth of July 

Ken Talley is 32, strong, goodlooking and a Vietnam vet with both legs shot off seven years earlier. He is somewhat cynical. His lover Jed is bigger and stronger, a gardner, a good listener... See full summary »

Writer:

Lanford Wilson (play)
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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
Richard Thomas ... Kenneth Talley Jr.
Jeff Daniels ... Jed Jenkins
Swoosie Kurtz ... Gwen Landis
Jonathan Hogan Jonathan Hogan ... John Landis
Joyce Reehling Joyce Reehling ... June Talley (as Joyce Reehling Christopher)
Helen Stenborg ... Aunt Sally Friedman
Cynthia Nixon ... Shirley Talley
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Danton Stone ... Weston 'Wes' Hurley
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Storyline

Ken Talley is 32, strong, goodlooking and a Vietnam vet with both legs shot off seven years earlier. He is somewhat cynical. His lover Jed is bigger and stronger, a gardner, a good listener. On Independence Day 1977 Ken's home in Lebanon Missouri is visted by the others. Much of their past relationships, pre- and post-Vietnam, must be pulled up and examined before any of them can decide their future. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 March 1982 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (PBS)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Recorded twice: once for Showtime in its uncensored form (130 min.) which has never been on home video, and again for PBS in a self-censored version (116 min.) which was released to home video on VHS and DVD. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Superior Talent- Superior Performance
14 March 2006 | by hmghosthostSee all my reviews

The rise to fame of Jeff Daniels (Arachnaphobia, Butcher's Wife, Good Night & Good Luck, Pleasantville), Cynthia Nixon (Amadeus, Sex in the City), Swoosie Kurtz (Sisters, Bubble Boy, Liar Liar, Reality Bites), Joyce Reehling (Nypd Blue, Law & Order, Ed, Long Time Companion), and Helen Stenborg (Longest Journey Video Game, Law & Order, Bonfire of the Vanities) is a testament to the combined acting perfection demonstrated in Fifth of July. I first saw this movie on PBS in 1989 and was instantly addicted to it.

I was thrilled when it finally came out on d v d, and I don't think I have a friend to whom I haven't shared this movie with. It's funny, it's sad, it's an attention grabber and thought provoker. Plus, of course, there's the chance to see sexy Jeff Daniels without a shirt through half the movie. It was also the first movie I had seen with a gay couple whose sexuality is neither the focus or the melodrama of the story. It was just there, it wasn't "in the way", and it presented a gay couple as they truly are - just part of the family like everyone else. The effect of this movie is that you're invited to join a family, and you feel as though you've become a part of their lives; but then the movie ends and you feel like you've suddenly been orphaned. You really fall for the characters. And the closing song is very beautiful - and I had memorized it on the first hearing! It kept me going until I bought the movie many years later on d v d.


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