A Soldier’s Daughter Never Cries (1998)


This fictionalized story, based on the family life of writer James Jones, is an emotional slice-of-life story. Jones is portrayed here portrayed as Bill Willis, a former war hero turned author who combats alcoholism and is starting to experience health problems. Living in France with his wife, daughter, and an adopted son, the family travels an unconventional road which casts them as outsiders to others. Preaching a sexual freedom, his daughter’s sexual discovery begins at an early age and betrays her when the family moves to Hanover in America. Her overt sexuality clashes with the values of her teenage American peers and gives her a problematic reputation. 

Director: James Ivory.
Stars: Kris Kristofferson, Barbara Hershey, Leelee Sobieski, Jane Birkin, Dominique Blanc, Jesse Bradford, Harley Cross, Isaach De Bankolé, Macha Méril, Nathalie Richard, Anthony Roth Costanzo, Bob Swaim, Virginie Ledoyen, Luisa Conlon, Samuel Gruen, Frédéric Da, Michelle Fairley.


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  1. Gregory
    April 17, 2020

    Sometimes, the least known of the Merchant-Ivory efforts are the ones that hide ‘true gem’ elements. In my opinion, this is one of them and I am so glad to have the chance to see it again. Thanks for posting!

  2. frannie
    May 10, 2020

    thank you so much for posting this. have been trying to find a decent copy for some time!!

  3. Henning
    May 1, 2022

    A film that would have no chance of being made today. James Ivory, Ruth Prawer Jhabvala and Ismail Merchant were a godsend for cinema, because in their best films they managed to bring film and literature closer together. “A Soldier’s Daughter” is epic in the best sense, not caring about forced conflicts but watching life itself. And it does so on a really appealing budget, too, and in a very atmospheric way. Truly a rare gem in these times when every film project must be franchiseable.
    Definitely one of my favorite films and a pity that it’s actually no longer available for purchase.

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