The Comedians (1967)

Approved   |    |  Drama


The Comedians (1967) Poster

A cynical Welsh hotel owner secretly romances a diplomat's wife in Haiti, under the violent reign of the despot "Papa Doc" Duvalier.


6.4/10
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  • Richard Burton and Lillian Gish in The Comedians (1967)
  • Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor in The Comedians (1967)
  • Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor in The Comedians (1967)
  • Lillian Gish and Raymond St. Jacques in The Comedians (1967)
  • Elizabeth Taylor in "The Comedians" 1967 MGM
  • Lillian Gish in The Comedians (1967)

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11 August 2005 | blanche-2
7
| overly long story of unrest in Haiti
Based on the novel by Graham Greene, The Comedians is a look at Haiti that nearly 40 years later remains the same - political unrest, poverty, corruption, and brutality. Set during the time of Papa Doc, the story centers on Richard Burton as the white owner of a hotel left to him by his mother. He is in love with the wife (Elizabeth Taylor) of an ambassador (Peter Ustinov) and has managed to remain apolitical. However, events force him to enter the fray.

The Comedians holds one's interest, although it's on the long side. The cast is remarkable: Burton, Alec Guinness, Peter Ustinov, Taylor, James Earl Jones, Lillian Gish, Georg Stanford Brown, Roscoe Lee Brown, and, in a small role, Cicely Tyson. Taylor is very beautiful, although her accent is all over the place. She sounds French in the beginning, then English, then like Elizabeth Taylor, and then in the middle of the movie, we find out she's German.

Though Burton went the schlock for cash route in his career, he was a wonderful, handsome actor with a remarkable voice. Towards the end of the film, he has a scene with Guinness that is well worth the wait - two great actors in a subdued and remarkable scene.

The Haitian scenery belies what lies underneath. It's a film that is perhaps more timely today than it was in 1967.

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