The V.I.P.s (1963) - Rotten Tomatoes

The V.I.P.s (1963)





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Terrence Rattigan, the playwright who brought us the multicharactered, multistoried Separate Tables, again offers us an episodic cross-section of humanity in The V.I.P.'s. When a heavy London fog paralyzes all air traffic, the lives of several people are profoundly affected. As indicated by the title, most of the characters in this portmanteau film are of the social and/or financial elite. Elizabeth Taylor wishes to leave her enormously wealthy husband Richard Burton in favor of playboy Louis Jourdan. Peripatetic European film producer Orson Welles is hoping to escape London with his newest protegee Elsa Martinelli in order to avoid paying his income tax. Australian businessman Rod Taylor, accompanied by his devoted (and adoring) secretary Maggie Smith, is anxious to head to New York to stave off a hostile takeover of his firm. And impoverished aristocrat Margaret Rutherford (who won an Oscar for her performance) would rather not go to Florida to accept a job as a social arbiter, but the wolf must be kept from the door. Before the fog disperses, you can be sure that at least one of the many plotlines will intersect with another. David Frost, in a tiny part as a reporter, was fond of recalling in later years that, while the major stars of The VIPS were introduced in the opening titles with animated limousines, he was consigned a tiny Volkswagen; alas, no such cartoon joke appears in the film, though on occasion the actors-particularly Mr. Welles-behave as though they were cartoons. Mercilessly skewered by the critics, The VIPS was a winner at the box-office, due in great part to the Cleopatra-inspired publicity concerning the top-billed Liz Taylor and Dick Burton. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovimore
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Drama, Classics
Directed By:
Written By: Terence Rattigan
In Theaters:
On DVD: Dec 5, 2006


Elizabeth Taylor
as Frances Andros
Richard Burton
as Paul Andros
Louis Jourdan
as Marc Champselle
Rod Taylor
as Les Mangam
Elsa Martinelli
as Gloria Gritti
Margaret Rutherford
as Duchess of Brighton
Maggie Smith
as Miss Mead
Orson Welles
as Max Buda
Dennis Price
as Cmdr. Millbank
David Frost
as Reporter
Robert Coote
as John Coburn
Joan Benham
as Miss Potter
Michael Hordern
as Airport Director
Lance Percival
as BOAC Official
Martin Miller
as Dr. Schwutzbacher
Stringer Davis
as Hotel Waiter
Clifton Jones
as Jamaican Passenger
Moyra Fraser
as Air Hostess
Raymond Austin
as Rolls Chauffeur
Jill Carson
as Air Hostess
Joyce Carey
as Mrs. Damer
Peter Illing
as Mr. Damer
Richard Caldicot
as Hotel Representative
Frank Williams
as Assistant to Airport...
Rosemary Dorken
as Airport Announcer
Pamela Buckley
as Airport Announcer
Ray Austin
as Rolls Chauffeur
Angus Lennie
as Meteorological Man
Duncan Lewis
as Hotel Receptionist
Richard Briers
as Meteorological Offic...
Richard Caldicott
as Hotel Representative
Jo Ann Castle
as Lady Reporter
Clifford Mollison
as Mr. River the Hotel ...
Gordon Sterne
as Official
Reginald Beckwith
as Head Waiter
Lewis Fiander
as (uncredited) Third R...
Cal McCord
as Visitor
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for The V.I.P.s

Critic Reviews for The V.I.P.s

All Critics (4)

Trying to shoehorn a talent ensemble into a trite premise results in unmitigated failure.

Full Review… | August 15, 2011
Cinema Sight

An all-cast star succeeds in camouflaging the thin plot of this adventure-disaster flick

Full Review… | April 22, 2011

It's jet-set entertainment for celebrity watchers and those who will watch anything while a passenger in air flight.

Full Review… | January 16, 2007
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Nothing's indicted here, just indulged.

Full Review… | January 15, 2007
Film Freak Central

Audience Reviews for The V.I.P.s

lush, plush silly but fun. Maggie Smith and Margaret Rutherford are excellent

jay nixon

Super Reviewer

A great cast. Just okay movie.

Sunil Jawahir

Super Reviewer

Fog delays at Heathrow Airport in London causes all flights to be grounded. The passengers get stranded during a critical time in their lives.

The only thing this film had going for it was the number of stars it had in it. It was annoying with all the different storylines and not very good at converging. It had no depth and no plot. The famous story behind the film would have made a much more amusing movie. That story based off of the true story about Vivien Leigh leaving her husband Lawrence Olivier for Peter Finch, which sounds much more entertaining than this miss match. Although, there are great performances by Orson Welles, Richard Burton, Elizabeth Taylor, Louis Jourdan, and Margaret Rutherford. They each seem to shadow each other but couldn't take center stage.

Laura R.
Laura Rachel

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