I Never Sang for My Father (1970) - Rotten Tomatoes

I Never Sang for My Father1970

I Never Sang for My Father (1970)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

I Never Sang for My Father Photos

Movie Info

Based on the play by Robert Anderson, I Never Sang for My Father is devoted to the prickly relationship between aged Tom Garrison (Melvyn Douglas) and his grown son Gene (Gene Hackman). A college professor who feels that he has never been fully accepted by his self-made dad, Gene announces that he is going to move from New York to marry a California divorcee. His mother (Dorothy Stickney) approves of the union but worries that her son's move will have a negative effect on the increasingly truculent Tom. When his mother dies just before the wedding, Gene is forced to help his father through his dark days. His sister (Estelle Parsons) urges her brother to break the ties for good and all--or else he'll wind up as bitter and withdrawn as their father. Gene realizes the wisdom of these words when he tries to reach out to his father during a vulnerable moment, only to have the crabby Tom tell him to get lost and leave him alone.

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Melvyn Douglas
as Tom Garrison
Gene Hackman
as Gene Garrison
Dorothy Stickney
as Margaret Garrison
Daniel Keyes
as Dr. Mayberry
Conrad Bain
as Rev. Pell
Jon Richards
as Marvin Scott
Carol Peterson
as 1st Nurse
Sloane Shelton
as 2nd Nurse
James Karen
as Mr. Tucker, Old Age Home Director
Jean Dexter
as Hostess
Beverly Penberthy
as Special Nurse
Valerie Ogden
as 3rd Nurse
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Critic Reviews for I Never Sang for My Father

All Critics (9) | Top Critics (2)

At a time when the cinema is devoted to understanding the young, one can't but welcome a film that cares to bother about the old.

June 8, 2020 | Full Review…

These bare bones of plot hardly give any hint of the power of this film.

October 23, 2004 | Rating: 4/4 | Full Review…

...a predominantly successful stage-play adaptation...

April 19, 2021 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…

I Never Sang For My Father is an emotion filled drama, a realistic and often painful look at the relationship of a middle aged son and his elderly father. But the power of the movie comes less from the drama itself than from the players.

November 19, 2018 | Full Review…

Penned by Robert (Tea and Sympathy) Anderson, this father-son medlodrama is superbly acted by Melvyn Douglas and Gene Hackman, both Oscar-nominated for their turns.

April 23, 2012 | Rating: B+ | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for I Never Sang for My Father

Very good early Hackman and he and Douglas spar nicely. Another story of intergenerational conflict and misunderstanding appropriately executed by the performers.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

I Never Sang for My Father Quotes

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