Misunderstood (1984 film)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Misunderstood poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byJerry Schatzberg
Written byBarra Grant
Based onMisunderstood
by Florence Montgomery
Produced byTarak Ben Amar
CinematographyPasqualino De Santis
Edited byMarc Laub
Music byMichael Hoppé
Distributed byMGM/UA Entertainment Co.
Release date
  • March 30, 1984 (1984-03-30)
Running time
91 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$10 million
Box office$1,525,532

Misunderstood is a 1984 American drama film directed by Jerry Schatzberg, based on the 1869 novel Misunderstood by Florence Montgomery.[1] This film stars Henry Thomas as a young boy who struggles with family, friends, and relationships after his mother's death.

The novel Misunderstood had previously been adapted as the 1966 Italian film Incompreso, which starred Anthony Quayle.[2]


Ned Rawley is an American shipowner established in Tunisia where his business thrives and monopolizes him. He lives in a beautiful villa with his two sons, Miles and Andrew, who are cared for by a newly arrived housekeeper because their mother has just died in a hospital abroad. The father decides to hide this tragedy from the youngest, inventing an extended trip for his mother.

For the older one, he continues to treat him as a "man", revealing to him the disappearance of his mother but remaining cold with him, being afraid to express his feelings. He does not realize that his son lacks affection and suffers from the absences and the harshness of education imposed on him by his father who transfers all his attentions to the youngest.

Finally, it is only during an accident caused by Andrew that the father and son will get closer.



Box office[edit]

Made on a budget of $10 million, the movie was also relying on A-List success of Gene Hackman and Henry Thomas, the latter of which was a successful child star who appeared in several blockbusters during that era. But the film flopped at the box office, opening at #11 with $916,967 in 741 screens, and went on to gross just $1,525,532 in its entire domestic run.


Shooting took place over four months in 1982. The director shot two endings, and wanted to use the more tragic one. The producer, Tarak Ben Ammar, then assembled his own more upbeat version of the film, adding extra flashbacks. This was then changed by MGM/UA.[3]



  1. ^ Montgomery, Florence (1869). Misunderstood. New York City: Anson D. F. Randolph & Company. ASIN QBAAAAQAAJ.
  2. ^ Zambenedetti 2014, p. 52.
  3. ^ Maslin, Janet (Mar 23, 1984). "At the Movies". New York Times. p. C6.


External links[edit]