7.4/10
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84 user 30 critic

84 Charing Cross Road (1987)

True story of a transatlantic business correspondence about used books that developed into a close friendship.

Director:

David Hugh Jones (as David Jones)

Writers:

Helene Hanff (book), James Roose-Evans (play) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Anne Bancroft ... Helene Hanff
Anthony Hopkins ... Frank P. Doel
Judi Dench ... Nora Doel
Jean De Baer Jean De Baer ... Maxine Stuart
Maurice Denham ... George Martin
Eleanor David ... Cecily Farr
Mercedes Ruehl ... Kay
Daniel Gerroll ... Brian
Wendy Morgan ... Megan Wells
Ian McNeice ... Bill Humphries
J. Smith-Cameron ... Ginny
Tom Isbell Tom Isbell ... Ed
Anne Dyson ... Mrs. Boulton
Connie Booth ... The Lady from Delaware
Ronn Carroll ... Businessman on Plane
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Storyline

When a humorous script-reader in her New York City apartment sees an ad in the Saturday Review of Literature for a bookstore in London that does mail order, she begins a very special correspondence and friendship with Frank P. Doel (Sir Anthony Hopkins), the bookseller who works at Marks & Co., 84 Charing Cross Road. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A true story


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 February 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Nunca te vi, siempre te amé See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$24,350, 16 February 1987

Gross USA:

$1,083,486

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,083,486
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Anne Bancroft and Sir Anthony Hopkins appeared in The Elephant Man (1980), another movie based on a true story. Both movies were produced by Brooksfilms, Mel Brooks' production company. See more »

Goofs

When Helene is at the dentist's office, the dentist pulls out an old style cable driven drill, but then when he starts to work, the sound is the high pitch sound of the much later turbine drill. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Businessman on plane: Your first trip to London?
Helene Hanff: Yes.
Businessman on plane: You want a word of advice? Don't trust the cab drivers; they'll take you five miles to go three blocks... and, uh, don't waste your time looking at a street map. Nobody can find their way around London - not even Londoners.
Helene Hanff: Maybe I should go to Baltimore instead.
Businessman on plane: No; you'll enjoy it. London's a great place. What kind of trip is it - business or pleasure?
Helene Hanff: Unfinished business.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The production teams in New York and London were almost completely separate, and the closing credits reflect this: in front of a split screen showing Helene in New York and Frank in London, the crews for the two cities scroll side by side. In most cases the same jobs are shown in both columns, and the job titles are then shown in the center. See more »

Connections

References The Adventures of Ellery Queen (1950) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A very pleasant , very intimate film
27 June 2005 | by CTS-1See all my reviews

I recently saw this film for the first time, as a chance to see an Anne Bancroft film I had not seen before. Bancroft and Hopkins are both excellent in this. And, more than almost any other film, they have to be excellent; their performances are the only thing this little film hangs on.

Everything about this film violates almost every "screenwriting 101" type rule. The two main characters communicate primarily through letters. Characters address the audience directly. There is no real conflict. Change occurs only with the natural passage of time in the characters' lives. No heroes, no villains. No romance, no violence, no adventures- just two people (one a writer, the other a rare-book dealer) living their lives and caring about how the other leads theirs.

And yet, the film works. Over the span of the 20+ years portrayed in the film, the audience gets to know and like both of the main characters, and their compatriots as well. And just getting to know them and their unique friendship makes it all worthwhile.

Also, the portrayal of the privations of the post-war U.K. of rations and food shortages is done very well. Michael Palin, amongst others, have addressed the tragicomic aspects of postwar rationing in the U.K., but in this film, it is poignant how even a poor American managed to make the entire bookstore's Christmases worthwhile with a well-timed shipment of Danish food.


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