The Family Man
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Product Description

High-powered Wall Street bachelor Jack Campbell (Nicolas Cage) gets the shock of a lifetime when he wakes up one morning in suburban New Jersey next to Kate (Ta Leoni) the girlfriend he left 13 years ago. Suddenly Jack's entire world is turned upside down. Can this once single-minded exec actually become The Family Man?System Requirements:Starring: Nicolas Cage Ta Leoni. Directed By: Brett Ratner. Running Time: 126 Min. Color. This film is presented in "Widescreen" format. Copyright 2000 Universal Distribution Corp.Format: DVD MOVIE Genre: COMEDY Rating: PG-13 UPC: 025192094125 Manufacturer No: 61020941

Jack Campbell (Nicolas Cage) is the quintessential Wall Street shark, scoring killer deals by day and shallow escort sex by night. His round-the-clock routine of empty luxuries is disturbed one lonely Christmas Eve when a gun-packing punk (Don Cheadle)--perhaps an angel of mercy--responds to an altruistic gesture from Jack by giving him "a glimpse" of the life he could have had. Could have, that is, if he had married the girlfriend (Ta Leoni) he'd abandoned 13 years earlier, raised two adorable children, worked in his father-in-law's retail tire outlet, and lived happily ever after in suburban New Jersey. Thrust into this "glimpse" of the path not taken, Jack's a single-malt man in a lite-brew world, wondering if he'll ever return to his "better" life of callous wealth and solitude--or if he even wants to.

Carp all you want about this derivative premise, with its marginal stereotypes and biased embrace of domestic bliss and dirty diapers. The simple fact is, The Family Man works like a charm. Under the assured direction of Brett Ratner (Rush Hour), this holiday crowd-pleaser offers comedy and chemistry in equal measure, making the hilarity of Jack's predicament a smooth catalyst for that rarest of movie romances: the marital love story. Leoni is Cage's perfect match as Jack's idealized but imperfect wife, and the movie's appeal largely derives from its awareness that any life has its pleasures and pains. While it only flirts with the dark desperation that makes It's a Wonderful Life a classic predecessor, The Family Man is an irresistible what-if fantasy, and even its debatable ending rides on a wave of genuine warmth and sentiment. --Jeff Shannon

Customer Reviews:

  • This is not my beautiful house . . .
    Think A CHRISTMAS CARROL with a modern-day twist to it and you've got FAMILY MAN. A tale of a man who chose buisness over pleasure. When told that he would get a higher-paying job out in the big city, he agreed to fly over there and take it . . . leaving his girlfriend behind who wanted to marry him really badly. He promised that he would come back and everything but never did. Now, a few years later, he is the rich and fancy buisness man that he always wanted to be. But, one night he is confronted by a man who claims that he can give him a glmipse of what his future might have been.

    Now it's come true.

    And now he's trying to get his buisness future back....more info
  • Jobs vs. Children
    Excellent story line, especially for those transitioning from college into the work world. It makes you think about your own life and what you might want...more info
  • Surprisingly Stupid
    The acting in this is fabulous.

    The sets are wonderful.

    The pacing is good, for this kind of fantasy-based thing.

    However, the values preached are little short of hideous.

    The "family man" (Jack Campbell) is given a graphic choice between two lifestyles: the hyper-hedonism of a mega-merger stockbroker, and the frantic dailiness (diaper-changes, picking the kids up, etc.) of a suburban housedad.

    Remember: when given a choice between (a) or (b), choose (c).

    These two choices are both soul-destroying, and to force anyone to choose either/or is the depth of sadism.

    And the end of the movie suggests that he can have BOTH--Hell squared.

    Why would anyone want either?...more info
  • Second chance
    The echoes of the Jimmy Stewart classic What a Wonderful Life are deafening in the movie Family Man, proving that, after a long time, life is wonderful.
    The film introduce us the story of a man that, once upon a time standing on a crossroad in his life, took the wrong path.
    Cage is Jack Campbell. We meet him 13 years younger, when he's about to separate from girlfriend Kate to make an internship in London. She begs him not to go, because she's convinced his leaving will mark the end of his relationship.
    13 years later, we realize Kate was right. Campbell is a business mogul, single and with a lifestyle that doesn't include a wife and kids.
    But in Christmas' eve, Jack wakes up by divine intervention in a sort of parallel universe, where he's married to Kate, has 2 children and lives in a New Jersey suburb, and even is the local bowling team leader.
    Desperate and mortified, Jack makes the impossible to return to his old life, while discovering the value that brings having friend, a living wife and a beautiful family.
    It's in this part where Family Man gets its hook; exploiting the feelings and emotional bonds that comes with an almost perfect family. Cage gives out a respectable performance that is overshadow by Leoni's role, whose freshness and passion transcends the screen.
    A very unconvincing and deficient ending becomes the handicap of this film. Is a lighthearted movie, with a positive message and good intentions, but it could be much better.
    ...more info
  • Money isn't everything
    Pretty good movie overall. I'd say it is more of a "Chick Flick", but most guys will watch it with ease. The movie in a nutshell is about a wealthy businessman, who is transformed into a domestic setting. At first Cage is a wreck and only wants his life back ( money included ). Within a few weeks, he begins to see that money isn't everything and a loving wife and kids can be worth far more than all the money in the world....more info
  • Swearing
    With the title of family man I did not think they would put the "F" word in the movie. It would have been an excellent movie if it were swear free....more info
  • Shamelessly plays to life's "also rans"
    Rarely have I seen a movie that is so clearly calculated to make the average schmoe feel good about his/her life, by implying (falsely) that with all its flaws, a drab surburban existence is better than the life of a highly successful Wall Street whiz. Don't get me wrong; the latter has its shortcomings, to be sure, but this movie just SCREAMS "don't envy those successful people you see on TV; your world of selling tires and changing diapers is much better." Baloney.

    As a zillion other reviews have noted, "The Family Man" borrows heavily from such classics as "It's a Wonderful Life" and "A Christmas Carol." Problem is that when those movies were released, they were fresh and orginial. "The Family Man" is neither. Cage's character acts like a complete moron; instead of claiming amnesia and trying to figure out what's going on, he races around like a madman, harangues people, gets drunk -- in a nutshell, does everything dead wrong. About two-thirds of the way through the movie he watches a video of the "other" Jack, whose life he has assumed, singing inanely to his wife, and gets all misty. This seems contrived, to say the least; remember, he's watching ANOTHER MAN'S memories.

    If you are a soppy sentimentalist you will love this movie. I didn't....more info
  • Surprisingly good
    Sometimes modern filmmakers get it right. Tucked in between a number of lackluster efforts, Nicolas Cage did this gem. It's not as universally well-regarded as it is here, but I'm considered pretty fussy when it comes to giving good ratings, and I'm torn between a 4 or a 5. Perhaps it's got a little to do with my low expectations; I passed on it after its lukewarm reviews and watched it only because of my sister's glowing report.

    Mostly, though, it's because it's an excellent, affecting film. It could have been played strictly as the contrivance it was, written by the numbers, but the writers did their job. They did what Josh Whedon and David E. Kelly do so well, which is find and mine the real human emotions that would occur in an otherwise outlandish situation. Brett Ratner, for his part, managed to elicit just the right notes out of Cage and Leoni (who's never looked more ravishing; my god), two actors who do well on their own, but their best with the right director. This is definitely Leoni's best performance, and one of Cage's. There are a few moments that don't ring quite true, but they stand out precisely for that reason: They're the exception, not the rule.

    I love being surprised by a movie. This one did it, and was an instant favorite....more info
  • Family First - Always
    "Don't screw up the best thing in your life just because you're a little unsure about who you are."

    I don't know how many married guys can recall it, but I know the exact time I decided to finally take the plunge with my then-girlfriend (now my wife). It was about an hour after I watched Nicolas Cage's Family Man, a full-wonder story about a wealthy Wall Street guy, Jack, given a glimpse of the non-wealthy life he could have lived had he not gotten on a plane and be separated from his then-girlfriend almost 2 decades ago.

    The transitional moments, from big-time dealer to small-time salesman, are hilarious. Used to waking up alone or with girls he just met, Jack wakes up with a wife and two kids and a dog jumping all over him. He rushes away to his sky-scraper to see his name - next to President - replaced by his junior. He tries to get into premium condo but the doorman doesn't recognize him and blocks his entrance. He struggles to change his baby son's, Josh, diapers. He has to ask his daugher, Annie, what the after-school S.O.Ps' are. He curses when his junior appears on TV shaking hands with a two corporate presidents whose merger his (ex-)company has arranged.

    But then Jack learns - or discovers - the joy of loving and living in spite of financial want, in spite of the no-cushion savings, in spite of not having that suit which makes him "feel like a man" (but which requires taking out his kids' education fund). He misses his trappings of status but grows to love Kate, Annie and Josh more than anything in the world. The quote at the start, by Arnie his friend, captures Jack's seizing and holding on to a family he knows he loves without having to figure out entirely this new world he's been thrown into.

    Sorrow beckons, though, when he realises he has to 'leave' this dream-like alternate reality which he started out hating but ended up cherishing. When the moment comes, it's full of dread, because he's back to his old super-wealthy but no-family life. He drives to the house belong to "him and Kate" but there's just a guy there who doesn't know any Kate. The real Kate is now a hot-shot lawyer, who's just packing up and about to transfer to Paris.

    Final drama arrives when Jack rushes to the airport looking for Kate, and trying to stop her before she flies off. Remember we are already in the "real world" and Jack has stopped 'dreaming'.

    He creates some commotion because Kate is already at the departure gate and about to board, and she keeps saying, "Jack, do you need closure?" which is probably what any woman would say if her boyfriend from 15 years ago, started pestering her about what "could have been". Kate then turns towards the gate and walks away. Jack is about to give up when he suddenly turns to Kate and desperately cries out to describe the alternate reality he's lived through with an alternate her:

    "We have a house in Jersey. We have two kids, Annie and Josh. Annie's not much of a violin player, but she tries real hard. She's a little precocious, but that's only because she says what's on her mind. And when she smiles...

    "And Josh, he has your eyes. He doesn't say much, but we know he's smart. He's always got his eyes open, he's always watching us. Sometimes you can look at him and you just know he's learning something new. It's like witnessing a miracle.

    "The house is a mess but it's ours. After 122 more payments, it's going to be ours. And you, you're a non-profit lawyer. That's right, you're completely non-profit, but that doesn't seem to bother you.

    "And we're in love. After 13 years of marriage we're still unbelievably in love. You won't even let me touch you until I've said it. I sing to you. Not all the time, but definitely on special occasions. We've dealt with our share of surprises and made a lot of sacrifices but we've stayed together.

    "You see, you're a better person than I am. And it made me a better person to be around you. I don't know, maybe it was just all a dream. Maybe I went to bed one lonely night in December and I imagined it all. But I swear, nothing has ever felt more real.

    "And if you get on that plane right now, it'll disappear forever. I know we could both go on with our lives and we'd both be fine, but I've seen what we could be like together. And I choose us."

    Little did Cage & Co. know that six years later, there would be another movie with another husband, another wife and another two kids (plus another dog which looked like the dog in Family Man). This movie is also about family and getting a glimpse into a major What-If. Whilst Cage started out in a scenario he did enjoy and ended back in the same situation he later detested, the main character of this movie starts out being "tired with his life", but ends back in the same situation an entirely changed man, thoroughly grateful for the life he has (as opposed to the life he thought he had lost).

    I'm talking about Adam Sandler's Click. But I won't ruin two movies at one go (smile), so I'll end with the theme which unites these two masterpieces: Family is first, the job is completely secondary. Never take for granted the ones who love you, no matter what riches beckon and no matter how attractive alternatives may appear to be....more info
    This bittersweet look at WHAT IF? a charming and well done dramedy featuring a marvelous performance by Nicolas Cage. Cage plays Jack Campbell, a successful businessman with an eye for how to make big bucks. On his way home from work on Christmas Eve, he interacts with Don Cheadle, who is trying to cash in a lottery ticket at a convenience store that turns into an attempted robbery. After he successfully convinces Cheadle to accept money from him in lieu of robbery, things start to happen. Cage wakes up on Christmas morning with a whole new life, a life he could have had with a girl he left thirteen years earlier. Tea Leone gives a smart, evocative performance as his wife. Cage finds himself at first completely disgusted with his new middle class life with two children, a slobbering dog and a job as a tire salesman at his father-in-law's tire store. It isn't long, however, before Cage realizes this life isn't so bad after all.
    This could have been hopelessly schmaltzy, but thanks to Cage's sincere performance and Brett Ratner's straightforward direction, THE FAMILY MAN is a heartfelt excursion into what choices we make in life. The supporting cast includes recent Emmy winner Jeremy Piven and Josef Sommer. It's a nice warm film....more info
  • Robert Frost Meets Charles Dickens on Wall Street
    Nicolas Cage is the hook in this one. He plays a successful Wall Street investment banker who wakes up one day to find himself on the "road not taken"--married to the girl he left behind almost 20 years ago. Cage does a nice job portraying his confusion. Likewise, wife Tea Leoni does pretty well as she grows into loving her "new" husband. Don Cheadle has a bit part as the mysterious street person who sends Cage on this adventurous way, for reasons that aren't made very clear. This movie was released at Christmastime and as such bears resemblance to the classic "A Christmas Carol"--a "C+" version--I'll upgrade it to 3 stars for Cage's and Leoni's performances....more info
  • A More than Passable Romantic Comedic Fantasy
    "The Family Man" is, at its core, a Romantic Comedy, but it is also a fantasy in the "how your life might have been" genre that includes everything from "Sliding Doors" to "It's A Wonderful Life."

    Nicolas Cage plays Jack Campbell, an ambitious young man who leaves fiance Kate Reynolds, played by Tea Leoni, in 1987 to pursue an internship in London. Kate gives him a tearful, prescient speech at the airport about how certain she is that this means the end for them and begging him not to take the flight.

    The prologue gives way to thirteen years later where Jack is now President of his own firm on Wall Street and Scrooge-ish Jack gives his employees management-speak encouragement for why they are there working late Christmas Eve - and must return to work Christmas as well. (How many blockbuster mergers and acquisitions are accomplished on Christmas? I'm just askin'.)

    Jack is not only a slave-driver boss, he also makes only the most shallow attachments to any women in his life.

    His secretary tells him that he has a message from Kate - who he hasn't heard from since you-know-when.

    That night Jack interrupts a hold-up at the local convenience store, trying to cool off the stick-up man and save those threatened with a gun. The stick-up guy is played by the always good Don Cheadle and... hey, he's not just a stick-up guy! His exact nature is never exactly explained, but there are several obvious similarities with Clarence the Angel Third Class from "Wonderful Life". For one, he gives Jack, against his wishes, a "glimpse" of the alternate reality life. (For another - he gives Jack a bell to summon him, reminiscent of the part of Wonderful Life where bell-ringing accompanies Angels receiving their wings.

    The next morning Jack wakes up - in bed beside Kate, his wife of these many years, along with their two children in their suburban home in North Jersey, where they moved from New York, because that was no place to raise a family.

    Since this is a fantasy, no one can say what is the correct way to respond to such a situation, but I'll go ahead and say I found Jimmy Stewart's interpretation better than Mr. Cage's.

    Jack is not only no longer a wealthy Wall-Street Investment guy, he now works at his father's retail tire shop. He no longer entertains a string of beautiful women in his bedroom. Instead he bowls with his friend Arnie (a good turn by Jeremy Piven).

    We know, because of the formula, that Jack is going to go through a period of disorientation, and we know that we're going to arrive at the place where Jack will regret leaving Kate back at the airport thirteen years ago.

    I've said before that my least favorite romantic comedy clichs is the scene where one character goes tearing off to the airport because they made The Big Mistake and to prevent losing The Love Of Their Life, but I'll also go ahead and say that Cage and Leoni do good work in this scene with good words and good direction.
    ...more info
  • Really enjoyable @}->---
    This is such a good movie. It's part comedy but mostly drama/fantasy. Nicholas Cage is not always on par in the movies he's in, but here he is superb. He plays Jack who lives the 'good' life (Ferrari, luxurious Manhattan penthouse apartment, escorts etc). One night (Christmas Eve) he's in a convenience store when he meets the man that will change his life. Don Cheadle has the power to give him a glimpse into what his life would have been like if he'd stayed with his college sweetheart instead of going off to England to further his career. During his glimpse, he learns a lot about what is important in life. It took a while for him to do so; he even once tried to bring his family life back into his 'good life'.
    Basically, this movie is warm and moving and touching. There are some good lessons in it, and it's really enjoyable. Jeremy Piven has a small role and he's great in it too. If you like feel good movies, treat yourself to this. It's a great movie that I still watch often....more info
  • Kate is wonderful
    I love this movie. Tea Leoni is beautiful and fabulous particularly in this movie. This is the best movie for Tea Leoni?

    There is an impressive word Kate has said. Jack had not liked the world that he is a tire salesman and common husband in a glimpse. One day, Jack and Kate with their kids went to a shopping mall and Jack had a quarrel with Kate about his life.
    In a car on the way home after quarrel at the shpping mall, he questioned Kate, "How would you look at it(our life)?"

    Then, she says clearly and simply to him, "A great success story."

    I wanted to marry a woman like Kate. I dream my wife to say the same word. Anyway, have a good life, everybody....more info
  • A GREAT MOVIE that all should see!
    We often look back on our lives, no matter what age, and wonder how things would have turned out different. What if I hadn't ran that stop sign? What if I joined the Marine Corps instead of working for my uncle? What if I had been raised in a rural setting instead of the city? The family man takes the scenario of how one man see's how his life could have ended up had he made a different decision so many years before. It will make you laugh, it will make you cry, it will, if anything, make you realize how more important family is than money. Hope you like it as much as I did.
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  • Made me laugh and cry
    This is a wonderful movie, in fact, one of my favorites of all-time. Nicolas Cage and Tea Leoni are fantastic. It's one of those movies that I love to watch time and time again....more info
  • A good movie for the family
    This is an inspriation movie that helps you take pause in your life and consider possibility. Nicolas Cage has once again done an excellent job of taking the character and making them real. This is a movie that I share with my family and that we all enjoy and talk about. It's in my library and shall remain their for quite some time....more info
  • Great Movie
    Love Nicholas Cage in this one.. great story line with an emotional ending as well. Would recommend to anyone who loves a good family/love story...more info
  • Oh Yeah- pretty much...
    Nick Cage is the epitomy of Financial Success in this movie- He delivers a stellar performance, which, crazy enough enough was so consistent with my life, as an Investment Advisor- After wathcing this movie I made alot of changes in how I "spend" my time with the family- Very profound film- My wife and I watch it everytime we feel we get caught up in life and business- Awesome....more info
  • What if ... you got off the plane???
    Nicholas Cage and Tea Leoni simmer with chemistry in this delightful re-telling of Jimmy Stewart's classic movie "It's A Wonderful Life". Thirteen years earlier Kate (Leoni) begged Jack (Cage) to get off the plane bound for London. Jack took "the road less traveled" and ended up a Wall Street trader living out Playboy fantasies in his Manhattan penthouse. On Christmas Eve a street smart angel gives Jack a glimpse of what might have been had he gotten off the plane and married Kate. Jack freaks out at his suburban life of domestication complete with bowling buddies, working at his father-in-laws tire store, and Kate employed as a non-profit lawyer with two young children and a dog to boot. New York lights attract Jack until he gives the glimpse a chance and falls in love with life as a family man. One thing becomes clear to him ... that Kate was the love of his life and how he let her go by not choosing "us" left him rich in luxury and poor in love. When Jack runs into the angel he almost demands to stay where he is... but a glimpse is a glimpse and he wakes up in his Wall Street life. Jack's only salvation is to find Kate, now a big-time corporate attorney, before she moves to Paris and demands she get off the plane to have coffee with him.

    A sweet endearing promise of our loves lost and found and lost and found. Sometimes in following your heart's desires and manifesting the success you dearly want ... our heart's loves ought never to be underestimated.
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  • one of my favorite movies
    love this movie. very well done and a great feel good movie....more info
  • Horrible Movie But Great Theme Song
    First off this is the worst movie I have ever seen but thats not the point, the point is that the theme song for this movie couldn't of been more perfect. It came at the right time right as I was just about to take the movie out of the DVD player and whip the DVD across the street all of the sudden I hear the most beautiful thing I have ever heard in my life the song starts off with "where am I" actually I forgot the rest of the song but if you want to hear this beautiful song buy the Family Man or the First Season of That 80's show....more info
  • One of the best of its genre
    I just wanted to add my 5 stars worth....more info
  • Cute Movie
    I LOVE movies and have an ever increasing, eclectic collection. This is a movie that I like to watch if I want to smile. It's a feel good movie I think, a nice family film. A man has a chance to explore one "what if" of his life, and he expereinces the ups and downs of family life. The older daughter is just the cutest and when she knows theres something different about him and assumes he's an alien and says welcome to Earth, so cute! I think the ending is a little strange but it's good that it's not a "perfect" predictable canned ending. ...more info
  • The Fambly, Man
    Unbelievably sappy ending. Woman evinces absolutely no interest in forgotten old flame. Man raves delusionally. Woman is fascinated and tosses career. I'd sooner believe a navy officer in dress uniform would walk into a factory, scoop up a line worker, and carry her away. Contrived idiot plot....more info
  • Truly disappointing; leaves a bad taste
    This is the typical film that looks uplifting when you see it, but that when afterwards you start thinking about it, you realize how phony and manipulative it is. Here, Nicolas Cage is an arrogant yuppie businessman in Manhattan, who one day wakes up and finds himself in a paralell world, living a supposedly dreadful life in suburban New Jersey with his wife (her former girlfriend, in his previous life) and his (previously non existent) kids. The beautiful Tea Leoni, as the wife, deserved better than to be in this movie. The movie chastises the main character for not raising a family, yet the film shows family life as dreadful. The idea that Nicolas Cage had to sacrifice a family in order to get ahead in business is also phony. Most male yuppies are married; it's the women that usually have to made those sacrifices. Also, this movie is supposedly critical of heartless capitalism, yet it ends up celebrating it....more info
    This is a charming, romantic fanatasy. Nicholas Cage plays a slick, single, unemotional, Wall Street acquisitions mogul, who leads a sterile, empty life. He gets a once in a lifetime opportunity to catch a glimpse of the life he could have had, if only he had not separated from his college sweetheart, Tea Leoni, thirteen years ago. Don Cheadle engagingly plays the part of the celestial emissary who affords Cage his glimpse into an alternate life style, one that is complete with wife, kids, a dog, a house in the suburbs, and a lot of friends who care about him and his family. When he returns to his present day reality, he is faced with a choice that can change his future forever. What's a guy to do? Watch the movie and find out. This is an enjoyable, though predictable, film with good performances from the entire cast.

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  • Well done formula movie.
    This type of what if story has been told many times for example Mr. Destiny (1990).... So the concept is not unique. Yet Nicolas Cage and T a Leoni pull it off pretty well.
    The basic story is a "what if?" a single successful man is shown what it would be like if he had married the girl he left. He wakes up in the new environment and is disoriented. One good touch that you do not see to often is that the daughter (Makenzie Vega) perceives the change and helps him cope with his new life. This is similar to Peggy Sue Got Married (1986) on recognizing her dilemma they try to help her get back.
    The movie is worth a second watching. First for the story and second for the details.

    Mr. Destiny...more info
  • This movie left a warm glow in my heart.
    This is one of those movies that leaves a great impression on you. Tea Leoni is my favorite actress of the last 20 years-she's great in this. She has class, beauty--the whole package. Nicolas Cage is also a delight. I like how he chooses all sorts of roles & he sure found a winner in this one. It's simple & complicated at the same time. It's a bittersweet/feel good story with many twists & turns. This is such an underrated film & based on the comments already posted here, many feel the same as I do. One of the best I've seen in years & we should have more quality movies like this....more info
  • family values
    The workaholic Jack Campbell (Nicolas Cage) must decide whether his career is more important than his family. Not a serious movie, but one that reminds us of what counts in life....more info