Table for Five (1983)

Table for Five (1983)
6.1
  • 660
  • PG
  • Genre: Drama
  • Release year: 1983 ()
  • Running time: 122 min
  • Original Title: Table for Five
  • Voted: 660

J.P. Tannen takes his three children for a vacation cruise. They usually live with their mother and stepfather, but now J.P. feels capable of taking them. Emotional tragedy strikes, causing battles parent against parent, and parent against child. J.P. tries to show his children that he loves them.

#PersonCharacters
1Jon VoightJ. P. Tannen
2Richard CrennaMitchell
3Marie-Christine BarraultMarie
4Millie PerkinsKathleen
  • My Favorite Jon Voight Movie by 10

    If you've never seen, or even heard of this movie before you must give it a chance. I saw this movie when it was new and I have never forgotten how it touched me. It is a little dated now, but you forget when you get into the characters and the plot of the story. Without spoiling anything I must say that there is one scene where Mr. Voight absolutely rivets you to your seat with emotion and it is very memorable. Gets me every time. Richard Crenna has a most difficult role as the husband of Jon Voight's ex-wife. You want to keep your sympathy with Voight, but you understand Crenna's point of view as well.. I am not aware if Mr. Voight was ever nominated for any award from his performance this picture, but if not he surly should have been. This is my favorite Jon Voight movie!

  • Incredible Jon Voigt in a Truly Heart Moving Tale by 7

    You'll miss the point if you dismiss this as another Lifetime soaper. There is authentic truth, feeling and heart in this film if you watch it from the top and stick with it. Table for Five is an intelligently paced and structured story both men and women will relate to. A failed divorced father (Jon Voight) has been replaced in the lives of his ex-wife and children by a more well-heeled step dad (Richard Crenna). The biological father (Voight) is allowed to take a two week Mediterranean cruise with his three pre-adolescent kids - the first time he's spent an extended period with them in four years. His failings as a father soon become apparent days into the cruise, but tragic events transpire that challenge him to ante up for his kids in ways he could never emotionally risk before.

    A powerful film about fathering, Table for Five contains two of the ten best hours of Jon Voigt ever released on film - an outstandingly nuanced performance. The kids, especially Roxana Zal and Robbie Kiger are precociously honest actors. And dig the talent on the other side of the lens. Vilmos Zsigmond (Deer Hunter etc) is director of photography, Michael Kahn (editor on almost all Spielberg pix since Close Encounters) did the cut. The screenplay by David Seltzer (Lucas) gives the actors and the audience everything they could want from each character. Robert Leiberman's patient blocking and direction allows all the principal actors time to develop each scene. Professional all the way. A 9.5 out of 10, with only a half point deducted for a few somewhat slick TV-ish shortcuts in the production and a hammy helicopter dolly up. But, make no mistake. This one is not to be missed. Enjoy!

  • An Emotional, Underseen Film! by 9

    I can guarantee that ninety percent of my readers here have not seen this tear-jerking melodrama 1983's Table for Five, yet alone heard of it. Hopefully after reading my kind words, you will be somewhat intrigued by this movie. When doing my research for the film, I was shocked to see how vastly underrated the movie is. There are only a few reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, hardly any information on Wikipedia or Google-hardly anything out there in this vast Internet landscape. Then, why on earth is this movie so good? Sure, maybe some folks will say the movie is just a predictable Lifetime TV movie, but honestly it is much more than that. There are some elements that makes this film seem destined for the television at times, but to me it is much more than that. I consider the movie to be an honest, emotional portrayal about fatherhood and family.

    Directed by Robert Lieberman, this film is about a man named J.P Tannen (Jon Voight) who fails at being father and has not been quality alone time with his three children in over four years. He is given permission by his ex-wife Marie (Marie-Christine Barrault) and her new husband, Mitchell (Richard Crenna) to take the kids on a cruise in the Mediterranean. J.P loves his kids, Tilde (Roxana Zal), Truman-Paul (Robby Kiger), and Trung (Son Hoang Bui). However, it is clear that fatherhood is not one of his strong points. During the cruise, an emotional, life-altering tragedy strikes. This tragedy will allow J.P to figure out what went wrong and how he be a better father in the future.

    The performances in the film are honest and extremely realistic. Jon Voight gives a fantastic, heart-breaking portrayal of a father who means well, but cannot express that sentiment in a believable manner. For an actor of his caliber, his performance definitely goes under the radar. I was very impressed with the children actors. Casting children without any experience can often be problematic, but I was relieved that is not the case here. These children gave their best, especially Roxana Zal. Credit needs to be given to Richard Crenna as well. The actor, known for his role in First Blood, gives a steely performance as the stepfather. The movie tries to show how hard being a stepfather is, especially in the wake of tragedy. Also, a fun note, but keep an eye out for Kevin Costner-who portrays a newlywed on the cruise.

    I really did not know what I was expecting with the movie. On paper, this seems like an overly sappy Lifetime movie with the design to force tears out of you. As expected, those tears did come. What was unexpected were those natural tears. The movie hits you hard, much harder than I came to anticipate. Although my first thought was Lifetime movie, I knew it had to be more than that. Jon Voight in his prime, cinematography by Vilmos Zsigmond, editing by Michael Kahn-who has edited most of Steven Spielberg's movies. Luckily, their talents are not wasted here. I also liked how the film was only shot on location-in places like Rome and Egypt. This is a movie that no one knows about, so go ahead and check this movie out. It's an emotional, hard-hitting drama with an underrated Jon Voight performance.

    My Grade: A-

  • One of the Underated Best by 7

    TABLE FOR FIVE is a superior example of overlooked filmmaking. The story is poignant and compelling, Jon Voight ia terrific in a role prior to his character stage. His portrayal of a far from perfect father, not wholeheartedly trying to change his demeanor, is realistic and sensitive. Richard Crenna, far from the Walter Denton of "Our Miss Brooks" days, gives an excellent performance as a less charismatic, but especially decent man in a difficult position. The three child actors are equally empathetic and effective. This is a type of movie some critics mistakenly dismiss, but the rest of us appreciate..

  • A Father Trying To Find His Way! by 9

    Table for Five is a sweet, nuanced melodrama that flies under the radar and offers a heartfelt depiction of a man who is trying to set his life straight in the eyes of his children. Some people may dismiss this film as another Lifetime film, while others may find this to be a moving tear-jerker. I seem to be in the latter category. The film is edited and written well, thus making for a good, intelligent film.

    This film is about a father named J.P who is seen more as the friendly uncle. In order to change that view, he gets the permission from his ex- wife to take his three kids on a Mediterranean cruise where he finds out if this will be the best thing to happen to him.....or the worst thing to happen to him.

    Jon Voight delivers a heartfelt performance as J.P as the father who means well, but doesn't live up to expectations of his family. Richard Crenna delivers a good performance as J.P ex-wife's new husband. I also like the performances out of the children whom as first-time actors, were actually worth rooting for.

    Overall, Table for Five may not be the best drama film you'll see, but it still is a powerful piece of work that rings a true message about change and love. Like the movie itself, all the performances are heartfelt and meaningful. This may not be everyone's cup of tea, but it's certainly a film that flew under the radar and one that needs to go over the radar.

    My Grade: A-

#PersonCrew
1Vilmos Zsigmondcinematographer
2Miles Goodmancomposer
3John Morriscomposer
4Robert Liebermandirector
5Robert Schaffelproducer
6David Seltzerwriter