The Accidental Tourist is a 1988 American drama film starring William Hurt, Kathleen Turner, and Geena Davis. It was directed by Lawrence Kasdan and scored by John Williams. The film's screenplay was adapted by Kasdan and Frank Galati from the novel of the same name by Anne Tyler.
One of the most acclaimed films of 1988, it was nominated for four Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Original Score, and Best Supporting Actress for Davis, which she won. John Williams was nominated by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for Best Original Score.
Macon Leary (William Hurt) is a Baltimore writer of travel guides for reluctant business travelers, which detail how best to avoid unpleasantness and difficulty.
His marriage to his wife Sarah (Kathleen Turner) is disintegrating in the aftermath of the murder of their twelve-year-old son, Ethan. Sarah eventually leaves Macon, moving out of their house and into an apartment. After he falls down the basement stairs and breaks his leg, Macon returns to his childhood home to stay with his eccentric siblings.
Macon is pursued by Muriel Pritchett (Geena Davis), an animal hospital employee and dog trainer with a sickly son. Macon eventually hires Muriel to put his dog through much-needed obedience training. Although Muriel at first seems brash and unsophisticated, Macon finds himself slowly opening up to her and trusting her, and he spends most nights at her house. When Sarah becomes aware of the situation, she decides they should move back together into their old home. Macon leaves Muriel, and he and Sarah set up house once more.
When Macon visits Paris for research, Muriel surprises him by showing up on the same flight and stays in the same Paris hotel, recommended by Macon in one of his travel guides. She suggests that they enjoy themselves as if they are vacationing together. Macon insists he is there strictly for business, and he keeps Muriel at arm's length.
After Macon is bedridden in his room by his back problem, Sarah comes to Paris to care for him and make day-trips to help complete his travel research. After some time, Sarah confronts Macon about his relationship with Muriel, but he refuses to discuss the situation in any depth.
Macon dresses while Sarah still sleeps, then wakes her to tell her that he is going back to Muriel. On the way to the airport, Macon spots Muriel hailing a taxi and tells the driver to stop. Thinking the driver stopped for her, Muriel bends to gather her luggage and catches sight of Macon in the taxi. She smiles, and Macon returns the smile.William Hurt as Macon Leary
Kathleen Turner as Sarah Leary
Geena Davis as Muriel Pritchett
Bill Pullman as Julian
Amy Wright as Rose Leary
David Ogden Stiers as Porter Leary
Ed Begley Jr. as Charles Leary
Roger Ebert praised the film, giving it four out of four stars. The film holds a rating of 79% on Rotten Tomatoes based on 29 reviews.
Won:Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress - Geena Davis
New York Film Critics Circle Awards 1988 - Best Film
USC Scripter Award 1988
Golden Horse Award for Best Foreign Actor - William Hurt
Nominated:Academy Award for Best Picture
Academy Award for Writing Adapted Screenplay
Academy Award for Original Music Score
BAFTA Award for Best Adapted Screenplay
Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture - Drama
Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score
Golden St. George - 16th Moscow International Film Festival
The film is recognized by American Film Institute in these lists:2002: AFI's 100 Years...100 Passions – Nominated