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The Bridges of Madison County

4.6 out of 5 stars 821 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

World-traveling National Geographic photographer Robert Kincaid and Iowa housewife Francesca Johnson aren’t looking to turn their lives upside down. Each is at a point in life where expectations are behind them. Yet four days after they meet, they don’t want to lose the love they’ve found. Academy Award winners* Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood (earning her 10th Oscar nomination for her work here) and Clint Eastwood (who also produces and directs) bring blazing starpower and powerful conviction to the lovers chronicled in Robert James Waller’s rhapsodic bestseller.

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Clint Eastwood, Meryl Streep, Jim Haynie, Annie Corley, Victor Slezak
  • Directors: Clint Eastwood
  • Writers: Richard LaGravenese
  • Producers: Clint Eastwood, Kathleen Kennedy
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Parents Strongly Cautioned
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: June 1, 2010
  • Run Time: 135 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (821 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B003ASLJK4
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,394 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Bridges of Madison County" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Mr. Joe TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 27, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
This 1995 film, BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY, stars Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep, and was also produced and directed by the former. If you're used to seeing Clint in his belligerent Dirty Harry or Man With No Name persona, then you're likely to be enormously surprised by his triple triumph in this sensitive film in which nary a shot is fired or punch thrown.

The Streep character, Francesca Johnson, was an Italian war bride brought back to Iowa in 1945 by the soldier whose heart she captured. Twenty years later, she lives on a farm with her middle-aged husband and teenage son and daughter. Long since before, she's had to give up her career as a teacher because her spouse, an otherwise gentle and considerate man, doesn't approve of a working wife. She lives, without dreams or passion, a life of quiet desperation. Then along comes the Eastwood character, Robert Kincaid, during a period when Francesca is home alone, the rest of the family off to the State Fair in neighboring Illinois. Kincaid is a photographer for National Geographic, his current assignment to photograph the local covered BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY. The divorced Kincaid is the quintessential wanderer, at home wherever in the world he finds himself at the moment, taking his experiences and relationships as they come.

During the four days of her family's absence, Francesca falls deeply in love with Robert, and he with her. In him, she rediscovers her dreams of the wider world long denied her in rural Iowa. In her, he discovers the personal and emotional commitment that he professes not to need. When Francesca must choose between Robert and her family, Duty, Responsibility and Loyalty battle with the Heart for the outcome.
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Format: DVD
To those reviews centering on the "immorality" of not only the protagonists in this film, but the author of the novel, and the "Hollywood Establishment", I say this - you're missing the entire point. If "romance", "infidelity", and "lost love" are central themes of this film, then I suggest adding "human fallibility" to the list. Francesca and Robert ARE good people, who like all of us, are fallible. If they were not, then Francesca's decision wouldn't have been so difficult, and heart wrenching. Indeed, if she were truly selfish, and "immoral", she would have left her family immediately, and without hesitation.

Much of human behavior (and morality too) cannot be realistically assessed in black and white terms. Francesca and Robert are neither completely "bad", nor "good". They are decent individuals who happened to meet too late in life, in the wrong place, and thus, must suffer the consequences of these tragic, unfortunate circumstances. It's not Francesca and Robert vs. her family.

The emotional complexity of the storyline, the surprisingly good match up between Eastwood and Streep, and not to be overlooked - a fantastic soundtrack - make for a film I'd definitely recommend.
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Format: VHS Tape
This movie is one of my all-time favorite romances. It begins with adult siblings looking through their deceased Mother's things where they discover a secret. They "find their way" to a letter from their Mother (Francesca played by Meryl Streep) which is the content of this movie (along with 3 journals.) Francesca's words in the letter to her children open the story. "I know it sounds awful but I couldn't wait for you all to leave. You were going to be gone until Friday. Four days--just four days." This is where the story begins, in the past.
"THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY" is about these incredible life-changing four days of Francesca and Robert. The Father and children had left to enter a steer into a fair and Francesca stayed home. Not long after Francesca's family leaves, a photographer who is lost (Robert Kincaid played by Clint Eastwood) drives up to ask for directions to a covered bridge. She tries to tell him but they both get confused because the roads aren't marked. Of course if they would have been, this love story would have never have happened. The way their affair begins so innocently is part of what makes the story so compelling for me. Streep and Eastwood together are amazing; and their growing friendship and deep love that follows is magical. Both of their acting is flawless in my eyes as well as the music, script and cinematography. Eastwood is an impressive producer as well as director.
It is such a wonderful story I could paraphrase the whole thing; but I won't. Just enjoy each moment of their 4 days together which go on forever in their hearts. I think the moral of "THE BRIDGES OF MADSION COUNTY" is to be grateful for every day of our lives. Life is a long-winding road full of joy and sorrow.
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Format: DVD
Last night my wife and I watched this movie in "HI-DEFINITION" for the first time. Such glorious cinematography -- the countryside around the bridges of Madison county. "Beautiful music," said my wife. "I think Clint wrote it," I said.

Two nights earlier we had watched Clint Eastwood parry gracefully (that "ah shucks" style of his) with David Letterman, who asked him his age.

"I'm 78," said Clint.

"Now, I look 78!" said Letterman, only half-jokingly, "YOU look about 58!" The simple truth: Clint looks (to our eyes) as young as he did playing "Robert Kincaid, photographer" to Meryl Streep's "Francesca Johnson" Iowa farm wife, in this wonderful film, now 14 years old (1995).

So I came here in search of a 2-Disc "Special Edition" and -- lo and behold!

For those of us who love this movie, it seems incredible that "Bridges" didn't win a single award (though Meryl Streep was nominated for the "Best Actress" Oscar). This understated gem, masterfully directed by Clint Eastwood, remains my favorite of his films . . . actually affording Clint the vehicle for his very best acting; elicited, perhaps, by rising to the occasion -- having to 'act upwards' in the presence of the greatest actor/actress -- and deservedly the "most-nominated." (Did they say Meryl now had "15 nominations" when singing her praises at the Oscars, a week ago?)


The subtleties of Meryl's reading of an Italian-born mid-westerner "Francesca Johnson" grow ever-more-poignant, as the movie nears its end. We share her `heart-torn-in-two' agony at that moment, in the pouring rain, when her lover's battered, old green (59 GMC) half-ton is stopped ahead of them, at the light, directly in front of their red, (58 Chev) pickup truck.
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