- Rated: R
- Closed captioning available
- Run Time: 2 hours, 50 minutes
- Video: Color
- Released: January 26, 1999
- Originally Released: 1983
- Label: Sony Pictures
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Aspect Ratio: Letterbox - 1.85
- Aspect Ratio: Widescreen - 1.85
- Dolby Digital 5.1 - English
- Additional Release Material:
- Featurette: 56 Minute "Making Of" Featurette Directed by Laurent Bouzereau
- 9 Minutes of Deleted Scenes
- Trailers: SILVERADO
Performers, Cast and Crew:
New York Times - 09/23/1983
"...[A] sweet, sharp, melancholy new comedy....The performances represent ensemble playing of an order Hollywood films seldom have time for..."
New York Times - 12/25/1983
Included in The New York Times "10 BEST FILMS OF 1983"
Variety - 09/07/1983
"...All of [the actors] are given opportunities to shine, and all rise to the occasion with seeming effortlessness..."
Entertainment Weekly - 10/03/1997
"...It's an anthropological soap opera that casts a hushed, elegant spell..."
Total Film - 07/01/2003
"...The then fresh-faced Kevin Kline, William Hurt and Glenn Close excel as erstwhile '60s radicals, reunited in the '80s..."
Seven members of a close-knit college group of friends are reunited fifteen years later after the eighth commits suicide. The funeral and reception lead to an extended weekend for all as they decide to spend time together pondering the recent events. Amidst a barrage of Motown classics, the members each offer little tidbits about their current lives while reminiscing about the past. In college, the absent and recently deceased Alex was the biggest and brightest star of the bunch but never seemed to get anywhere after being set loose in the real world. The slow acknowledgement that their champion never materialized leads the group in ever widening circles of thought. Discussions of their past lives and current bring about the realization that each has changed so much while remaining remarkably similar. Despite the tragic circumstances, the group disperses with renewed friendships and a newfound appreciation for life.
- Kevin Costner played Alex, the dead friend, but alas, all of his scenes were cut from the film. He can still be seen briefly in the opening titles.
- Vincent Canby, the New York Times film critic, named "The Big Chill" one of the ten-best films of 1983.
- Filmed on location in Beaufort, South Carolina. Shot in Metrocolor.
- Screened at the Toronto Film Festival and the New York Film Festival, where it was the opening film.