Sarah, Plain and Tall (film)

Sarah, Plain and Tall is a 1991 Hallmark Hall of Fame made-for-television drama film. It first aired on February 3, 1991. It is the first of three installments in the film adaptation of Patricia MacLachlan's novel of the same name. Location shots were filmed in Grand Island, Nebraska, Wichita, Kansas, and outside of Melvern, Kansas.

Sarah, Plain and Tall
Sarah, Plain and Tall (film).jpg
Video release poster
Based onSarah, Plain and Tall by
Patricia MacLachlan
Screenplay byPatricia MacLachlan
Carol Sobieski
Directed byGlenn Jordan
StarringGlenn Close
Christopher Walken
Theme music composerDavid Shire
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
Executive producer(s)Glenn Close
William Self
Producer(s)Glenn Jordan
CinematographyMike Fash
Editor(s)John Wright
Running time98 minutes
Production company(s)Hallmark Hall of Fame
Self Productions
Trillium Productions
Original networkCBS
Original releaseFebruary 3, 1991 (1991-02-03)
Followed bySkylark
"Sarah, Plain and Tall"
Hallmark Hall of Fame episode
Episode no.Season 40
Episode 2
Production code288
Original air dateFebruary 3, 1991
Episode chronology
← Previous
"Decoration Day"
Next →
"Shadow of a Doubt"
List of Hallmark Hall of Fame episodes


The story is set in Kansas in 1910. Jacob Witting is a widowed farmer who is still saddened by the death of his wife, Katherine, during childbirth around six years before. Since her death, the task of taking care of his farm and two children, Anna and Caleb, is too difficult to handle alone. He advertises in the newspaper for a mail-order bride. Sarah Wheaton, from Maine, responds describing herself as "plain and tall", and travels out to become his wife. Upon arriving, she proves to have good sense, an interest in helping with even the most physically demanding chores, and a quiet, warm personality. But she grows homesick: miles and miles of Kansas farmland prove no substitute for Maine's ocean vistas. She is under no obligation to marry Jacob and is free to leave if she so desires; much of the story's suspense depends on whether or not she will decide to stay.



Generally well received by the public, the film was considered "Fresh" at Rotten Tomatoes with 80% approval based on five reviews. It was nominated for nine Emmys in 1991, it won one, for "Outstanding Editing for a Miniseries or a Special - Single Camera Production". It was also nominated for two Golden Globes.


The film was followed by two sequels:

External linksEdit