Taglines: A small town is a hard place to have a big dream.
Mary Ann Taylor loves the comforts of her hometown in Mercury, Texas. She has a steady job as a waitress in her father’s diner, yet she can’t help but feel unfulfilled by a life of pouring coffee and grilling hamburgers. Mary Ann’s real passion is photography, but pursuing her dream of becoming a photographer means leaving Mercury behind. Despite her desperation to expand her horizons, Mary Ann hesitates to leave because of her mother’s declining health and because of her new romance with Jack Parker.
Jack is a mechanic who just returned to town after realizing the cruelties of the outside world. He experienced big-city living first-hand and wants nothing more than to settle down back home. But Jack and Mary Ann soon find that cruelties exist in their own little town when Jack discovers that his sister Nancy is being brutally beaten and routinely abused by her husband Les. While Jack struggles with how to help Nancy, Mary Ann is faced with a crucial choice about her future.
Independence Day is a 1983 film directed by Robert Mandel from a script by the novelist Alice Hoffman. It was designed by Stewart Campbell and shot by Charles Rosher. It stars Kathleen Quinlan, David Keith, Cliff DeYoung, Frances Sternhagen and Dianne Wiest.
The film concerns the small-town life of an artist (Quinlan) and her challenge to become “what she’s almost sure she could be.” “Her desperation takes the form of affectations and pretensions that are a little like those of the young Katharine Hepburn in Alice Adams and the young Margaret Sullavan in The Shop Around the Corner, but the Quinlan character “has the talent driving her on past all that.” Wiest plays a battered wife.
The film was reviewed favorably by the critic Pauline Kael in her collection State of the Art: “Kathleen Quinlan plays the part of the woman artist with a cool, wire-taut intensity, Robert Mandel keeps the whole cast interacting quietly and satisfyingly, Wiest has hold of an original character and plays her to the scary hilt.” After years only available on VHS, Independence Day got a DVD release by the Warner Archive Collection on November 2015.
Independence Day (1983)
Directed by: Robert Mandel
Starring: Kathleen Quinlan, David Keith, Frances Sternhagen, Cliff De Young, Dianne Wiest, Josef Sommer, Bert Remsen, Brooke Alderson
Screenplay by: Alice Hoffman
Production Design by: W. Stewart Campbell
Cinematography by: Charles Rosher Jr.
Film Editing by: Tina Hirsch, Dennis Virkler
Costume Design by: Julie Weiss
Set Decoration by: George R. Nelson
Art Direction by: Scott H. Campbell
Music by: Charles Bernstein
Distributed by: Warner Bros. Pictures
Release Date: January 21, 1983