The story pivots around a bitter and middle aged married couple. He is George (Richard Burton), an associate History professor at the New Carthage University and she is Martha (a beautiful Elizabeth Taylor) whose father is the University president. Their relationship is punctuated by vitriolic verbal battles fueled by an excessive consumption of alcohol. Late one Saturday evening, Martha invites Nick (a very young George Segal) and Honey (Sandy Dennis), an ambitious young Biology professor new to the university and his mousy wife, over for a nightcap. As the evening progresses, Nick and Honey, while imbuing more alcohol, get caught up in George and Martha's games of hurting each other and everyone around them. The ultimate abuse dies out in a moving talk between George and Martha about their dead sixteen year old son. The film was conferred many awards, is in superb Black and White and the main interest is drawn by the acting and language exchange between Burton and Taylor who actually married and became the power couple of the 1960s. There are many memorable quotes by the characters, such as Martha’s “Look, sweetheart, I can drink you under any goddamn table you want, so don't worry about me.” .
What a powerful movie!!! I wonder how many marrigas are afected by disilugenement like that?
Great screenplay Liz Taylor and RIchard Burton are diabolically on the mark
never seems to date
Brilliant! Chillingly, edge of the seat in horrified amazement, brilliant. Elizabeth Taylor is superb in this - she was right to say it was the film she was most proud of. Richard Burton matched her performance with his own, subtly nuanced threat.
This would have to be one of the all time classic movies of all time.
The stage play I saw was much better. This one was over-acted. The recently deceased Dame Elizabeth got an Oscar for this bit of theatrics, so it must be good in some eyes.
The acting and directing in this movie is obviously brilliant, but i just couldn't watch this movie after 45minutes. Two people hurling abuse at each other - regardless of how clever it is - just isn't very pleasant to watch. A great movie, but just not enjoyable at all. And honestly, no one could be that mean to each other and stay married
George and Martha have no children, but Martha has an imaginary son, aged 16. George knows about it, and plays along with her fantasy. George is an associate professor of history at the college where Martha's father is president, but instead of being head of his department, his career has stalled. Martha niggles him about his lack of ambition. They are first seen walking through the college gardens after attending a staff party at the college. It's 2.30 in the morning and Martha tells George she's invited a new member of staff, Nick, and his young wife, Honey, over for a nightcap. George is not pleased, he's tired and complains that she's always springing things on him. The young couple arrive in the middle of a heated argument with Martha baiting George about being bogged down in the history department. The young couple sit watching and shocked at the ferocity of their invective. With insults being hurled at him, George disappears into a back room, takes down a rifle from a top shelf and gives Martha the fright of her life when he comes out and points it at her. An adaptation of the 1962 Albee play, this movie packs an emotional punch that leaves one reeling. Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor go from loving couple to hurling accusations at each other in perhaps their greatest performance on film. George Segal and Sandy Dennis are wonderful as the invited audience witnessing, and eventually drawn into, the verbal battle and party games that continue until dawn.
Amazing movie, Richard Burton was absolutely incredible!
Two great performances from Taylor and Burton. Taylor just blew me away.
If you like your drama black you will love this.