The plot of The Graduate revolves around twenty-one-year-old Benjamin returning home after completing his Bachelor’s program. Like so many young men before or since, despite having put so much work into getting the diploma, he doesn’t know what he is going to do with it. The past feels like a con, and the future a scary game where, as he will explain, the rules are made up on the fly. Dodging his own celebratory party, which is populated entirely by friends of his parents, Benjamin runs into Mrs. Robinson. Sensing his confusion, Mrs. Robinson sets her sights on the boy, luring him into an illicit affair and ushering him into manhood. It’s no accident that her wardrobe is full of animal prints. She sets upon the hopeless grad like a predator. Hoffman is hysterical as the reluctant lover, so easily manipulated in his fumbling cluelessness.
Eventually, though, Benjamin is going to have to quit lounging around the pool and do something with himself. Both Mr. Robinson and Mommy and Daddy think the answer is in dating Elaine, the Robinson daughter, home for the summer from Berkeley. This is a crossroads for Benjamin, as dating her daughter is the one thing Mrs. Robinson asked him not to do. For as much as she could be seen as the criminal in the movie, you have to feel sorry for the woman when Benjamin forges ahead with his asinine plan. Really, her only crime was expecting a dopey kid to realize how damaging such an action would be. —DVDtalk.com
Mike Nichols (born Nov. 6, 1931, Berlin, Ger.) American motion-picture and stage director whose productions focus on the absurdities and horrors of modern life as revealed in personal relationships.
Nichols immigrated with his family to the United States at the age of seven. He attended the University of Chicago (1950–53), studied acting under Lee Strasberg in New York City, and then returned to Chicago, where, with Elaine May, Shelley Berman, Barbara Harris, and Paul Sills, he formed the comic improvisational group The Compass Players. Nichols and May then traveled nationwide with their social-satire routines, and from 1960 to 1961 they performed on Broadway in An Evening with Mike Nichols and Elaine May.
Nichols made his Broadway directorial debut with the highly praised Barefoot in the Park (1963) and went on to direct a series of commercially and critically successful Broadway plays, many written by Neil Simon. He won Tony awards for Barefoot in the Park, Luv (1964… read more
My friend told me that my appreciation of films would be lacking had I not seen this film and I can honestly say he was right. The acting, plot, screenplay…all staggeringly amazing. Not only that, but the theme behind it and the Simon and Garfunkel to back it up…a must see and a new favorite of mine.
With its "existentialist" concerns, its depiction of a dispassionate search for love, its emotionally detached college graduates, and a party scene early on in the narrative that sets events in motion, this is both thematically and structurally very much like a present day mumblecore film. Proto-mumblecore... I'm starting to really dislike this already...
More gems from around the world in this quarterly Tumblr round-up.
A Letter to Momo in Japan, Hou Hsiao-hsien on Taiwanese cinema, Nicolas Rapold on Michael Glawogger, Ben Rivers’s playlist and more.
Belle découverte pour moi que ce Le lauréat avec Dustin Hoffman et Anne Bancroft. Derrière ces allures de film ne jouant que sur la carte de la séduction, Mike Nichols dépeint le choc générationnel… read review
My feelings for this little article began with an unquenchable lust, bloomed into immense admiration, settled into a cozy tolerance then plunged into sickening despair. The first half is overflowing… read review
Very sexy and at the same time awkward. The humor comes out more and more with repeated viewing. At least it did for me. Now that I’m done with school that feeling of just floating aimlessly in… read review