On Golden Pond by Ernest ThompsonThis is the love story of Ethel and Norman Thayer, who are returning to their summer home on Golden Pond for the forty-eighth year. He is a retired professor, nearing eighty, with heart palpitations and a failing memory but still as tart-tongued, observant and eager for life as ever. Ethel, ten years younger, and the perfect foil for Norman, delights in all the small things that have enriched and continue to enrich their long life together. They are visited by their divorced, middle-aged daughter and her dentist fiancé.
A Visit to 'On Golden Pond' (2010)
On Golden Pond
The screenplay by Ernest Thompson was adapted from his play of the same name. The film's narrative revolves around an aged couple, cantankerous retiree Norman Thayer and his conciliatory wife Ethel, who spend summers at their New England vacation home on the shores of idyllic Golden Pond. After leaving Billy behind to bond with Norman, Chelsea returns, attempting to repair the long-strained relationship with her aging father before it's too late. The film received critical acclaim for Rydell's direction, Thompson's screenplay and Hepburn and Fonda's performances. Henry Fonda won his only competitive Oscar with this film and at the age of 76 became the oldest winner in the Best Actor category, while Katharine Hepburn won her fourth Best Actress award, extending her own record for the most Oscars won by a thespian. An aging couple, Ethel and Norman Thayer, continue the long tradition of spending each summer at their cottage on a lake called Golden Pond, in the far reaches of northern New England. When they first arrive, Ethel notices the loons calling on the lake "welcoming them home".
On Golden Pond is a play by Ernest Thompson. The plot focuses on aging couple Ethel and Norman Thayer, who spend each summer at their home on a lake called Golden Pond. The play explores the often turbulent relationship the young woman shared with her father growing up, and the difficulties faced by a couple in the twilight years of a long marriage. Norman and Ethel arrive at the summer house, finding it in need of repairs. There are hints that Norman is having problems with his memory. Norman makes a nominal effort to find a job in the classified ads, to Ethel's chagrin.
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Simple affection is so rare in the movies. Shyness and resentment are also seldom seen. Love is much talked-about, but how often do we really believe that the characters are in love and not simply in a pleasant state of lust and like? Fragile emotions are hard to portray in a movie, and the movies that reach for them are more daring, really, than movies that bludgeon us with things like anger and revenge, which are easy to portray. I could believe in its major characters and their relationships, and in the things they felt for one another, and there were moments when the movie was witness to human growth and change. I left the theater feeling good and warm, and with a certain resolve to try to mend my own relationships and learn to start listening better. All of those achievements are small miracles for any movie, but especially for this one, which began as a formula stage play and still contains situations and characters that are constructed completely out of cardboard.
Sign in. Norman is a curmudgeon with an estranged relationship with his daughter Chelsea. At Golden Pond, he and his wife nevertheless agree to care for Billy, the son of Chelsea's new boyfriend, and a most unexpected relationship blooms. The loons are back again on Golden Pond and so are Norman Thayer, a retired professor, and Ethel who have had a summer cottage there since early in their marriage. This summer their daughter Chelsea -- whom they haven't seen for years -- feels she must be there for Norman's birthday. She and her fiance are on their way to Europe the next day but will be back in a couple of weeks to pick up the fiance's son.