For a better experience on MUBI, update your browser.
494 Ratings

Running on Empty

Directed by Sidney Lumet
United States, 1988


Loosely inspired by the lives of Weather Underground leaders Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn, Lumet’s provocative, emotionally powerful family drama stars Judd Hirsch and Christine Lahti as aging Sixties radicals who’ve spent two decades on the lam after an anti-Vietnam protest bombing.

This film is not currently playing on MUBI but 30 other great films are. See what’s now showing
Running on Empty Directed by Sidney Lumet

Awards & Festivals

Academy Awards

1989 | 2 nominations including: Best Actor in a Supporting Role

National Board of Review

1988 | 2 wins including: Best Supporting Actor

Golden Globes (USA)

1989 | Winner: Best Screenplay - Motion Picture

1989 | 4 nominations including: Best Motion Picture - Drama

Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards

1988 | Winner: Best Actress

Critics reviews

The weaknesses of the film are twofold: an inability to convey any convincing grasp of the present beyond the family’s present (and ongoing) situation, and a belt-and-suspenders heavyhandedness that has always been Lumet’s biggest stumbling block in driving home a dramatic climax.
October 11, 1988
Read full article

What are people saying?

Related films