Where to Watch "The Straight Story"


Directed by

David Lynch

Lila Sommers
Lila Sommers
· 5 min read

Who's in it?

Richard Farnsworth

Richard Farnsworth

Sissy Spacek

Sissy Spacek

Harry Dean Stanton

Harry Dean Stanton

Everett McGill

Everett McGill

Kevin Farley

Kevin Farley

John Farley

John Farley

Jane Galloway Heitz

Joseph A. Carpenter

Donald Wiegert

"The Straight Story," released in 1999, stands out as a unique and touching road drama directed by David Lynch. It tells the true story of Alvin Straight, played by Richard Farnsworth, who embarks on a remarkable journey to mend a strained relationship with his estranged brother.

Release Date and Director:

"The Straight Story" was released on October 15, 1999, and directed by the renowned filmmaker David Lynch.


Set against the backdrop of rural America, the film introduces us to Alvin Straight, an elderly man living in Laurens, Iowa. Learning that his brother Lyle, played by Harry Dean Stanton, has suffered a stroke, Alvin, who is unable to drive due to his own health issues, decides to make amends.

Unable to obtain a driver's license, Alvin takes matters into his own hands and rigs a lawnmower into a makeshift motorized cart. The film follows his incredible journey from Iowa to Wisconsin, covering over 240 miles at a slow but determined pace. Along the way, Alvin encounters a variety of people, each with their own stories, creating a tapestry of human connection and understanding.

As the narrative unfolds, the simplicity of the journey belies its emotional depth. "The Straight Story" beautifully explores themes of family, forgiveness, and the importance of human connections.

Significance, Themes, and Why You Should Watch:

"The Straight Story" stands out for its departure from David Lynch's typically surreal and enigmatic style. Instead, it embraces a straightforward and heartfelt storytelling approach.

The film's significance lies in its ability to capture the essence of human relationships and the power of personal journeys, reminding audiences of the importance of reconciliation and forgiveness.

This film is a must-watch for those who appreciate emotional depth, strong character development, and the beauty found in life's simple moments. It serves as a reminder that even the most ordinary journey can be extraordinary in its own right.

Where to Stream

United States (US):

There are currently no streaming offers in the US.

  • Streaming Options: Disney Plus
  • Buying Options: Apple TV, Amazon Video, Google Play Movies, YouTube, Vudu, Microsoft Store, DIRECTV, AMC on Demand
  • Free Options: None

United Kingdom (GB):

There are currently no streaming offers in the GB.

  • Streaming Options: None
  • Buying Options: Apple TV, Amazon Video, Curzon Home Cinema
  • Free Options: None

Germany (DE):

There are currently no streaming offers in the DE.

  • Streaming Options: Amazon Arthaus Channel
  • Buying Options: Apple TV, Amazon Video, Google Play Movies, YouTube, LaCinetek
  • Free Options: None

Spain (ES):

There are currently no streaming offers in the ES.

  • Streaming Options: Filmin, Movistar Plus, FlixOlé, FlixOlé Amazon Channel
  • Buying Options: None
  • Free Options: None

France (FR):

There are currently no streaming offers in the FR.

  • Streaming Options: Canal+, OCS Go, FILMO, OCS Amazon Channel, Filmo Amazon Channel, Molotov TV
  • Buying Options: Apple TV, Orange VOD, Canal VOD, LaCinetek, Universcine, Amazon Video
  • Free Options: None

Production Details:

Directed by David Lynch, "The Straight Story" showcases Lynch's versatility as a filmmaker, moving away from his signature surreal and mysterious narratives. The screenplay was written by John Roach and Mary Sweeney. Filming locations include various towns in Iowa and Wisconsin, providing an authentic backdrop to Alvin's journey.

The production faced its own set of challenges, primarily in capturing the slow pace of Alvin's journey. Farnsworth's incredible performance, coupled with Lynch's direction, succeeded in portraying the quiet beauty of the Midwest landscape.

The film's budget was modest, reflecting its understated nature, but it managed to resonate with audiences through its powerful storytelling.

Reception and Awards:

Critical Reception: "The Straight Story" received widespread critical acclaim for its genuine storytelling and Farnsworth's outstanding performance. Critics praised Lynch's departure from his usual style and the film's ability to evoke deep emotions.

Audience Reception: While not a blockbuster, the film gained a dedicated following, especially among audiences appreciative of character-driven narratives and emotional depth.

Awards and Nominations: Richard Farnsworth earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor, a testament to his compelling portrayal of Alvin Straight. The film also received recognition at various film festivals for its unique approach and storytelling.

Trivia and Fun Facts:

  • Richard Farnsworth, who portrayed Alvin Straight, was a seasoned stuntman before becoming an actor, adding authenticity to the physical demands of the role.
  • The real-life Alvin Straight passed away shortly before the film's release, making the movie a poignant tribute to his extraordinary journey.
  • David Lynch's decision to direct a G-rated film, a departure from his usual darker themes, surprised many, showcasing his versatility as a filmmaker.

"The Straight Story" remains a gem in David Lynch's filmography, celebrated for its simplicity, authenticity, and the extraordinary journey it unfolds.

Lila Sommers

About Lila Sommers

Lila is your media maven with a passion for the extraordinary! Spot her at the local bookstore or crafting her own stories on lazy Sunday afternoons. From indie flicks to hidden gem tracks, Lila's knack for weaving words and tunes is unmatched, making her your ultimate companion in the exciting world of media and entertainment.

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