The Entertainer (1960)

The Entertainer




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

Laurence Olivier recreates his stage role of Archie Rice in this in-your-face film adaptation of John Osborne's play. The son of a legendary music hall comedian (Roger Livesey), Archie is strictly a third-rater, headlining a tacky music hall revue in a seedy seaside resort town. Archie can't admit that he's a failure, and his grim insouciance destroys everyone around him. Archie finagles his dying father into financing one last revue; he cheats shamelessly on his alcoholic wife (Brenda De … More

Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama, Musical & Performing Arts, Art House & International, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: John Osborne, Nigel Kneale
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jun 19, 2001

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as Archie Rice

as Jean Rice

as Billy Rice

as Phoebe Rice

as Frank Rice

as Mick Rice

as Graham

as Soubrette

as Tina Lapford

as Ada Lapford

as Columnist

as Harold Hubbard

as Brother Bill

as Interviewer

as Cobber Carson

as Charlie Klein

as Eddie Trimmer
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News & Interviews for The Entertainer

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Critic Reviews for The Entertainer

All Critics (13) | Top Critics (3)

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

Full Review… | January 26, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Full Review… | May 20, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

Laurence Olivier gives one of his most riveting, Oscar-nominated performances in this bleak drama about a selfish, aging, pathological vaudevillian.

Full Review… | June 7, 2011

One of Olivier's best roles; overall production A+.

August 14, 2007

A stagebound tragi-comedy that remains limp despite Sir Laurence Olivier's powerful performance.

Full Review… | January 28, 2005
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for The Entertainer


Wow, tough audience @ the Flixster. Give the poor guy a break.

Bob Stinson

Super Reviewer

The Entertainer is slice of history, and is an ably presented filming of the John Osborne play. Though the story's political allegory is now old and faded itself - Archie Rice/Lawerence Olivier's pathetic floundering music hall and career, which stands in for a fading, bankrupt post-WWII Britain ,what remains is still worth seeing.

This is a kitchen sink family drama with terrific seedy English seaside and sleazy theater atmosphere. Tony Richardson's early career showed great promise, and this film is a beautiful example of his talents. It contains Sir Larry's most heartfelt and naturalistic peformance on film and it's too bad that he didn't have more of these type of interior, heartfelt performances on film, the grandiose Shakespearan dramas aside.

The cast includes a who's who of future British film stars,as Archie's three grown kids - Alan Bates, Albert FInney and Joan Plowright, all in their first film appearances. Robert Livsey and Brenda de Banzie as Archie's elegant music hall dad and his second wife, an alcoholic, are also wonderful.

For a Canadian, it's amusing that the panacea for the family's problems is to make a new life in Toronto, something that Archie resists till the end of the film after a whole load of tragedy has beaten him down.

Without the contemporary relevance of 1960, this is just a very good family drama with a top notch British cast, but no world shaking groundbreaker. The DVD transfer is crisp and looks fantastic.

Josh Morris
Josh Morris

Super Reviewer

If you only know Olivier from dignified Shakespearian performances prepare yourself for an epiphany of colossal proportion.

Randy Tippy

Super Reviewer

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