The Birdcage (1996)



Critic Consensus: Mike Nichols wrangles agreeably amusing performances from Robin Williams and Nathan Lane in this fun, if not quite essential, remake of the French comedy La Cage aux Folles.

Movie Info

Director Mike Nichols teams up with his former partner/screenwriter Elaine May for the first time in many years and for the first time together in films to create this sophisticated, remake of the phenomenally popular French musical farce La Cage aux Folles that stars Robin Williams, Nathan Lane, Gene Hackman and Diane Wiest as two dramatically disparate couples who manage to reconcile their vast differences for the sake of their children who are getting married. Williams plays Armand Goldman, … More

Rating: R (adult situations/language)
Genre: Gay & Lesbian, Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: Elaine May
In Theaters:
On DVD: Mar 25, 1997
MGM Home Entertainment


as Armand Goldman

as Albert/Starina

as Sen. Keeley

as Louise Keeley

as Val Goldman

as Barbara Keeley

as Harry Radman

as Photographer

as Chauffeur

as Goldman Girl

as Goldman Girl

as TV Man in Van

as Goldman Girl

as Waiter in Club

as TV Woman in Van

as TV Man in Van

as Club Hostess

as Fishmonger

as Bakery Man

as Senator Eli Jackson

as TV Host

as TV Host

as Keeley's Maid

as Black Girl On TV

as Goldman Girls

as TV Reporter

as TV Reporter

as TV Reporter

as TV Reporter

as TV Reporter

as State Trooper

as Waiter in Cafe

as Big Guy in Park

as TV Reporter

as Waiter In Cafe

as Katharine's Secretar...

as TV Editor

as TV Editor

as Latino Man In Club

as Goldman Girls
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News & Interviews for The Birdcage

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Critic Reviews for The Birdcage

All Critics (47) | Top Critics (12)

This isn't the supreme masterpiece it might have been, but Nichols's direction is very polished and some of the lines and details are awfully funny.

Full Review… | May 29, 2011
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

If The Birdcage isn't exactly the Mike Nichols-Elaine May movie of our dreams, it does manage to transform what was formerly a campy bit of French fluff into one of the loopiest, most hysterical family-values movies ever made.

Full Review… | May 27, 2011
Washington Post
Top Critic

The Birdcage is a scream.

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

It doesn't so much champion diversity as celebrate conformity.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

A glossy miscalculation with Nathan Lane and Robin Williams.

Full Review… | June 18, 2002
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

What makes Mike Nichols' version more than just a retread is good casting in the key roles, and a wicked screenplay by Elaine May, who keeps the original story but adds little zingers here and there.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Birdcage

Accomplished comedy, The Birdcage is a well acted and directed picture that boasts a stunning cast of talented actors, a great story, a well thought out script and is a an engaging film that features a wonderful performance from late, great actor Robin Williams. Aside from Williams, there are plenty of great performances here, especially that of Hank Azaria. The story has a fine blend of comedy with serious overtones in a way that makes The Birdcage standout. The cast elevate the material, and under the direction of Mike Nichols, he crafts a near perfect film that relies on effective, memorable performances to really make this standout. We can see the result on-screen. The Birdcage works very well and is a fun, entertaining film that is funny, dramatic and features an impressive story that is sure to delight any viewer wanting a comedy with depth and great performances. The film may have few weak areas that could have been improved upon, but as a whole, the film has stronger points rather than weak points, and it's a film that embraces the fact that it has aspects that don't quite work, and runs with it due to the fact that a great portion of the material is well executed, and that the cast that director Nichols works with does so much to make the story and tone of the film be enjoyable for the viewer. The Birdcage may not be great cinema, but it's definitely one of those films that features a heartfelt, amusing performance by Robin Williams and with that being said, at least we have gems like this to revisit him even if he's gone. He was a talented comedian and actor, and he was able to adapt his unique style to any genre, and even if this film is a comedy, he added a serious angle to his role that just showed how great he really was.

Alex roy

Super Reviewer


With a deliciously flamboyant Nathan Lane stealing the scene and Robin Williams in a greatly nuanced composition, this fun comedy also boasts elaborate camera movements and knows really well how funny it is, not even resorting to any sort of cute music to underline its humor.

Carlos Magalh„es

Super Reviewer

GURL! You gotta see it! So many one-liners, I can't even begin to rattle them off.

Christian C

Super Reviewer

The Birdcage Quotes

– Submitted by Loren T (2 years ago)
– Submitted by Christian C (2 years ago)
– Submitted by Christian C (2 years ago)
– Submitted by Jillian L (2 years ago)

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