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Regarding Henry

Regarding Henry
File:Regarding henry ver1.jpg
Original poster
Directed by Mike Nichols
Produced by Mike Nichols
Scott Rudin
Written by J. J. Abrams
Starring Harrison Ford
Annette Bening
Bill Nunn
Music by Hans Zimmer
Cinematography Giuseppe Rotunno
Edited by Sam O'Steen
Distributed by Paramount Pictures
Release dates
  • July 12, 1991 (1991-07-12)
Running time
107 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $50 million[1]
Box office $43,001,500 (US)[2]

Regarding Henry is a 1991 American film drama starring Harrison Ford and Annette Bening, directed by Mike Nichols.

The screenplay by J. J. Abrams focuses on a New York City lawyer who struggles to regain his memory and recover his speech and mobility after he survives a shooting.


Ambitious, callous, narcissistic, and at times unethical, Henry Turner is a highly successful Manhattan attorney whose obsession with his work leaves him little time for his prim socialite wife Sarah and troubled preteen daughter Rachel. He has just won a malpractice suit in which he defended a hospital against a plaintiff who claims, but is unable to prove, that he warned the hospital of a pre-existing condition that then caused a problem.

Running out to buy cigarettes one night, Henry is shot when he interrupts a convenience store robbery in progress. One bullet hits his right frontal lobe, which controls some behavior and restraint, while the other pierces his chest and hits his left subclavian vein, causing excessive internal bleeding and cardiac arrest. He experiences anoxia, a lack of oxygen to the brain, resulting in brain damage.

Henry survives, but initially he can neither move nor talk, and he suffers retrograde amnesia. He slowly regains movement and speech with the help of a physical therapist named Bradley. Upon returning to his luxurious apartment, the almost childlike Henry is impressed by the surroundings he once barely noticed. As he forges new relationships with Sarah and Rachel, he realizes he does not like the person he was before the attack.

As Sarah thinks it is best for all of them, Rachel is put into an out-of-town elite school for girls, as had been previously planned, but now that she and her father are closer than ever, she is not happy to go. At orientation, Henry tells Rachel a fib to encourage her to enjoy the new surroundings and people. Sarah and Henry become much closer, as they had been when they first met. Henry also misses Rachel dearly.

His firm allows him to return to work out of deference to his previous contributions to the firm's success. His wife suggests the family relocate to a smaller, less expensive residence. As his firm takes away his old assignments and large office and essentially assigns him only busy work, Henry begins to realize he does not want to be a lawyer anymore either. While the couple are at a dinner party, they overhear several of their 'friends' making derogatory comments about Henry.

He finds letters to Sarah from a former colleague disclosing an affair they had, becomes angry and upset, and leaves home. He is confronted by Linda, a fellow attorney at his firm, who reveals that they were also having an affair and that he had told her he would leave Sarah for her, making him have second thoughts about himself and his relationships.

He gives documents from his last case, that were suppressed by his firm, to the plaintiff who was in the right all along, and apologizes. Henry then goes back to the firm and resigns, says goodbye to Linda, and, realizing that (as Sarah had said) everything had been wrong before, but was now so much better, returns to her and they reconcile. The couple goes to Rachel's school and withdraw her, and she is overjoyed to be with her parents. As the family leaves the building, she tosses her school-uniform hat away.



The film was shot on location in New York City, White Plains, and Millbrook.


Original soundtrack

Regarding Henry: Music From the Motion Picture Soundtrack was released on August 6, 1991 on Virgin Records/EMI Records.[3]

Regarding Henry:
Music from the Motion Picture Soundtrack
Soundtrack album by Hans Zimmer
Released August 6, 1991 (1991-08-06)
Recorded Mid 1990 - Early 1991
Media Ventures, Los Angeles
Right Track Recording, New York
Genre Film score, adult contemporary, instrumental pop, doo-wop, soft rock
Length 35:25
Label Virgin/EMI
Producer Hans Zimmer, Jay Rifkin

Track listing

  1. "Walkin' Talkin' Man"
  2. "A Cold Day In NY"
  3. "Blowfish"
  4. "Ritz"
  5. "Henry Vs Henry"
  6. "Ritz Part II"
  7. "I Don't Like Eggs"
  8. "Gotta Get Me Some Of That"
  9. "Central Park, 6PM"
  10. "Buddy Grooves"


Critical reception

Initial critical reception was mainly lukewarm to negative. Vincent Canby of The New York Times described it as "a sentimental urban fairy tale" that "succeeds neither as an all-out inspirational drama nor as a send-up of American manners."[4]

Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times rated the film two out of four stars and commented, "There is possibly a good movie to be found somewhere within this story, but Mike Nichols has not found it in Regarding Henry. This is a film of obvious and shallow contrivance, which aims without apology for easy emotional payoffs, and tries to manipulate the audience with plot twists that belong in a sitcom." The reviewer also described the way the movie makes a connection between Ritz Crackers and the Ritz-Carlton hotel (which reveals that Henry's affair had in fact been deeply embedded in his apparently lost memories) as "especially annoying", apparently regarding it as comic.[5]

Rita Kempley of The Washington Post called the film "a tidy parable of '90s sanctimony"[6] while Peter Travers of Rolling Stone described the film as a "slick tearjerker" that "has a knack for trivializing the big issues it strenuously raises." However he praised Ford's performance.[7]

Variety however called the film "a subtle emotional journey impeccably orchestrated by director Mike Nichols and acutely well acted."[8]

Regarding Henry currently holds a 44% rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 27 reviews.

Box office

The film opened in 800 theaters in the United States on July 12, 1991 and grossed $6,146,782 on its opening weekend, ranking #7 at the box office. It eventually earned $43,001,500 in domestic markets.[2]

Home media

The film was released on Region 1 DVD on September 9, 2003. It is in anamorphic widescreen format with audio tracks in English and French and subtitles in English.


Annette Bening was named Newcomer of the Year for her work in this as well as Guilty by Suspicion, The Grifters, Valmont, and Postcards from the Edge by the London Film Critics' Circle.

The film was nominated for the Young Artist Award for Best Family Motion Picture - Drama, and Mikki Allen was nominated Best Young Actress Starring in a Motion Picture.

See also


External links