Ragtime is a 1981 American film, directed by Miloš Forman, based on the 1975 historical novel Ragtime by E. L. Doctorow. The action takes place in and around New York City, New Rochelle, and Atlantic City in the first decade of the 1900s, and includes fictionalized references to actual people and events of the time. The film is notable for featuring the final film appearances of James Cagney and Pat O'Brien; as well as early appearances, in small parts, by Samuel L. Jackson, Jeff Daniels, Fran Drescher and John Ratzenberger. Also, the music was the first full feature score composed by Randy Newman. The film was nominated for eight Oscars.
In early 20th Century New York, Father, Mother and Younger Brother reside in a house in New Rochelle. Younger Brother becomes smitten with coquettish showgirl Evelyn Nesbit, whose wealthy husband Harry Kendall Thaw murders architect Stanford White in a jealous rage.
An abandoned baby is found by Mother in her garden. She takes it into her home, and eventually the baby's mother Sarah to work for the family as well. A ragtime musician, Coalhouse Walker Jr., has become prosperous with his expertise at the piano. He is the baby's father and drives in