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A Child Is Waiting (1963)

Approved
102 min | Drama

Psychologist Dr. Matthew Clark is the head of the Crawthorne State Training Institute, one of the first boarding schools for developmentally challenged children. Dr. Clark is sympathetic but demanding of his teachers and students. His ...See morePsychologist Dr. Matthew Clark is the head of the Crawthorne State Training Institute, one of the first boarding schools for developmentally challenged children. Dr. Clark is sympathetic but demanding of his teachers and students. His approach of tough love is controversial. He takes a chance at hiring former aspiring concert pianist Jean Hansen as the school's music teacher, Miss Hansen who has no background in nursing, teaching or dealing with the developmentally challenged. She herself is trying to find her own place in life. She immediately bonds with autistic student Reuben Widdicombe, who she sees as needing special attention in light of his parents having not visited him since they enrolled him in the school two years earlier. The Widdicombes divorced shortly thereafter because of the pressures their relationship faced in dealing with Reuben. Dr. Clark sees Reuben as the type of child the most difficult with which to deal: Reuben understands just enough to realize that he is different and is often being rejected. Miss Hansen and Dr. Clark disagree on how best to get through to Reuben. Although Dr. Clark admits that his methods have not worked with Reuben, he also does not believe that Miss Hansen's approach of undivided attention is the answer. Through getting to know the Widdicombe's reasons for not visiting and she herself seeing the life of the adult disabled, Miss Hansen comes to an understanding of how she feels she can best help her students, Reuben included. Written by Huggo See less
Read more: Plot summary
Writer
Abby Mann (screenplay) (story)
Composer
Cinematographer
Joseph LaShelle (as Joseph La Shelle)
Casting Director
Production Designer
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Status
Edit Released
Updated Jan 14, 1963

Release date
Jan 14, 1963 (United States)

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Cast

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25 cast members
Name STARmeter Known for
Burt Lancaster
Dr. Matthew Clark Dr. Matthew Clark   See fewer
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Judy Garland
Jean Hansen Jean Hansen   See fewer
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Gena Rowlands
Sophie Widdicombe Sophie Widdicombe   See fewer
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Steven Hill
Ted Widdicombe Ted Widdicombe   See fewer
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Paul Stewart
Goodman Goodman   See fewer
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Lawrence Tierney
Douglas Benham Douglas Benham   See fewer
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Bruce Ritchey
Reuben Widdicombe Reuben Widdicombe   See fewer
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John Marley
Holland Holland   See fewer
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Bill Mumy
Boy Counting Jean's Pearls Boy Counting Jean's Pearls   See fewer
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Elizabeth Wilson
Miss Fogarty Miss Fogarty   See fewer
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Jim Backus
Hot Dog vendor (uncredited) Hot Dog vendor (uncredited)   See fewer
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John Cassavetes
Retarded Adult Who Walks Toward Camera (unconfirmed) (uncredited) Retarded Adult Who Walks Toward Camera (unconfirmed) (uncredited)   See fewer
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Marilyn Clark
Actress (uncredited) Actress (uncredited)   See fewer
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Brian Corcoran
Lewis (uncredited) Lewis (uncredited)   See fewer
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Fred Draper
Dr. Sack (uncredited) Dr. Sack (uncredited)   See fewer
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Mario Gallo
Dr. Ernie Lombardi (uncredited) Dr. Ernie Lombardi (uncredited)   See fewer
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Juanita Moore
Julius' Mother (uncredited) Julius' Mother (uncredited)   See fewer
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Butch Patrick
Boy Playing Football (uncredited) Boy Playing Football (uncredited)   See fewer
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Barbara Pepper
Miss Brown (uncredited) Miss Brown (uncredited)   See fewer
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Jay Phillips
Actor (uncredited) Actor (uncredited)   See fewer
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Noam Pitlik
Concerned Father (uncredited) Concerned Father (uncredited)   See fewer
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James Rawley
Jim (uncredited) Jim (uncredited)   See fewer
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Michael Stevens
Actor (uncredited) Actor (uncredited)   See fewer
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June Walker
Mrs. McDonald (uncredited) Mrs. McDonald (uncredited)   See fewer
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Ratings Breakdown

7.3 / 10 | 2,142 votes