Enormous Changes at the Last Minute

A feature film for ABC, released theatrically in 1982. Based on the short stories of American author Grace Paley and written by John Sayles (Casa de los Babys, Matewan), the film stars Ellen Barkin and David Strathairn.


Enormous Changes is a tough and funny film about three women living and struggling with relationships in New York City.  In the first of three loosely connected stories, Virginia (played by Ellen Barkin) is forced to go on welfare after her deadbeat husband leaves her and their three children.  Soon after, Virginia begins an affair with an old flame who is now married.  Her challenge is to struggle to keep sanity and humor alive against high odds.

Directed by Ellen Hovde and Muffie Meyer, Enormous Changes At The Last Minute was selected for London and Toronto film festivals.


Directed by Ellen Hovde, Muffie Meyer
Based on stories by Grace Paley
Screenplay by John Sayles
Cast: Ellen Barkin, Ron McLarty, David Strathairn, Sudie Bond, Ryan Brown, Minona Haviland, Brian Morrow, Rosemary De Angelis


[A] tough and funny film about three women who live in the same neighborhood in the East Village.
Sharon Lee Doubler, The Hollywood Reporter

…a very sensitive portrayal of very real women… I left the film with a renewed sense of pride in womanhood.
Michelle Helin, Vice President of ABC

A sensitive, warm and very human film which poignantly tells the stories of three modern young women confronting the problems of living alone in the harsh urban world of New York.
ABC Pictures International

…Ellen Barkin…is so extraordinarily natural as an actress that she never makes a false move. Her performance is easily the best thing in the film.
Janet Maslin, The New York Times