Kramer vs Kramer (1979)
Directed by Robert Benton
Starring Dustin Hoffman and Meryl Streep
A movie that proves that fathers can step up and be everything to their kids. Today on our countdown to the Oscars we take a look at Kramer vs Kramer. This movie won for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor for Hoffman and Best Supporting Actress for Streep.
The story centers around Ted Kramer, a workaholic that works in advertising. His world is suddenly altered when his wife, Joanne, decides she wants to leave him to find herself. She lives him with their son, as he is forced to learn how to really balance his work and being there for his son. At first, we can see how both of them struggle with the fact that they are on their own as slowly Ted begins to see his son as the most important thing in his life. Then after time Joanne returns and decides to fight Ted for custody and here is the social commentary of the film. It is assumed that the kid should be the mother, even if she left Billy and Ted was taking good care of their son. In court, they throw as evidence a time the kid fell, as to say he did not take care of Billy. In the end Joanne realizes that Billy wants to be with his father and she knows that he takes good care of him.
I like this movie a lot because it shows the fathers side. Mostly fathers are portrayed in films as distant and the ones that usually abandon their kids. This movie shows that fathers have the capacity to love their children just as much as a mother does and that mothers also have the capability to leave their children. I am a firm believer both parents have equal importance, but sometimes society gives the mother a little more.
Dustin Hoffman is brilliant in the role and gives an amazing performance. We see how he begins to realize that he was giving too much importance to his work, when the most important thing in his life was Billy. Meryl Steep is also brilliant in the role. We can see the character’s pain when she realizes she made a mistake in leaving. The last scene between Hoffman and Streep is so moving and perfectly performed.