Critic Review - Chicago Sun-Times

It is a good topical movie whose time has passed

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Comments (5)
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Comments

Vampire Reilly

Reilly Johnson

Hurp durp! Fat boy is wrong The Graduate is a timeless classic! I'm a 14 year old kid who hasn't even seen The Graduate so I think I know!

May 30 - 12:33 AM

Andrew I.

Andrew Imrie

Your time has passed! Just kidding, I wanted to make that joke. But seriously, this is a great film.

Jul 20 - 04:55 PM

Deniz Irgi

Deniz Irgi

Timeless!

Aug 16 - 03:36 AM

Crystal Witten

Crystal Witten

It does seem like a 14 year old kids version of what being 21 might be like.

Jan 17 - 01:15 PM

Brandon W.

Brandon Whales

that's pretty much how I feel I can see how good this movie is and how relevant it was when it was made but it's so very dated

Apr 6 - 10:06 PM

Katherine Ebright

Katherine Ebright

I disagree very much with this review.

Ben is not an admirable rebel because he isn't a rebel at all. He takes what's thrown at him. He's effectively spineless, afraid of others and afraid of himself. His only sense of drive occurs when he becomes fixated on something. With a goal in place, he can work mechanically because he is not making important decisions. Even Ben's decision to marry Elaine is a function of indecision, as Ben has literally no other course of action that would require tough decision-making. Ben needs to be told what to do.

Ben's malleability explain why Mrs. Robinson--an aging and insecure woman, likely jealous of the youth and freedom of her daughter--finds it all too easy and desirable to sink her claws into him. She's vile and manipulative, and Ebert is right--she seems like she's getting what she wants. But more than a cursory glance at her character suggests that she's not getting what she wants at all. Nothing can rehabilitate her marriage, and worse yet, nothing can help her regain her wasted years. Ben is just a diversion so that she can have a stake in something, anything.

Ben's not a hero and he's not a villain; he's just listless and weak. Mrs. Robinson certainly is a villain, and one of the worst, at that; Nichols has done a fantastic job at preventing her from being a caricature, though, and she's quite pitiable.

Das all.

May 20 - 09:59 PM

Katherine Ebright

Katherine Ebright

I disagree very much with this review.

Ben is not an admirable rebel because he isn't a rebel at all. He takes what's thrown at him. He's effectively spineless, afraid of others and afraid of himself. His only sense of drive occurs when he becomes fixated on something. With a goal in place, he can work mechanically because he is not making important decisions. Even Ben's decision to marry Elaine is a function of indecision, as Ben has literally no other course of action that would avoid tough decision-making. Ben needs to be told what to do.

Ben's malleability explain why Mrs. Robinson--an aging and insecure woman, likely jealous of the youth and freedom of her daughter--finds it all too easy and desirable to sink her claws into him. She's vile and manipulative, and Ebert is right--she seems like she's getting what she wants. But more than a cursory glance at her character suggests that she's not getting what she wants at all. Nothing can rehabilitate her marriage, and worse yet, nothing can help her regain her wasted years. Ben is just a diversion so that she can have a stake in something, anything.

Ben's not a hero and he's not a villain; he's just listless and weak. Mrs. Robinson certainly is a villain, and one of the worst, at that; Nichols has done a fantastic job at preventing her from being a caricature, though, and she's quite pitiable.

Das all.

May 20 - 10:01 PM

Emmanual K.

Emmanual Kreisman

Aug 17 - 10:29 PM

Theo Michelfeld

Theo Michelfeld

Sep 22 - 01:56 PM

Theo Michelfeld

Theo Michelfeld

I'm afraid a lot of people misunderstand this movie. Mrs. Robinson bullies Benjamin and gets what she wants. Benjamin, in turn, bullies Elaine and gets what he wants. Both characters are sympathetic, but both behave very dishonorably out of a sense of entitlement. They each missed their chance, and they each insist on having it back. The counterculture backdrop is relevant because it is ironic. The young man feels alienated from the adults, but in the end he is a mirror image of Mrs. Robinson. And like her conquest, his is a hollow victory. It's a brilliant, timeless film.

Sep 22 - 02:07 PM

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