Why ''Kramer vs. Kramer'' is a top tearjerker
It defined ''yuppie angst'' before the term was even invented. After wife Joanna (Meryl Streep) abandons her family to ''find herself'' (give her a break -- it was 1979), Manhattan adman Ted Kramer (Dustin Hoffman) raises their young son (Justin Henry). The emotional struggle that occurs when Joanna decides she wants her boy back packs a more potent punch since the subtle performances avoid the obvious hero/villain stereotypes.
KLEENEX MOMENT At the custody hearing, Ted pleads with his ex-wife not to take their son: ''We built a life together.... If you destroy that, it may be irreparable. Joanna, don't do that, please.'' Snff.