Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966)
Average Rating: 8.6/10
Reviews Counted: 32
Fresh: 31 | Rotten: 1
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Average Rating: 6.6/10
Critic Reviews: 5
Fresh: 4 | Rotten: 1
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 4.1/5
User Ratings: 20,858
"You are cordially invited to George and Martha's for an evening of fun and games." Thus read the ad copy for Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf, which in 1966 went farther than any previous big-studio film in its use of profanity and sexual implication. George (Richard Burton) is an alcoholic college professor; Martha (Oscar-winner Elizabeth Taylor) is his virago of a wife. George and Martha know just how to push each other's buttons, with George having a special advantage: he need only mention the
Jun 22, 1966 Wide
May 18, 1999
Warner Home Video
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Edward Albee's vitriolic stage portrayal of domestic blisslessness translated grainily and effectively to the screen.
And in its forthright dealing with the play, this becomes one of the most scathingly honest American films ever made.
Keen adaptation and handsome production by Ernest Lehman, outstanding direction by Mike Nichols in his feature debut, and four topflight performances score an artistic bullseye.
'You have ugly talents,' George says, almost admiringly, to Martha. So does this movie.
"I am the earth mother, and you are all flops," Martha proclaims toward the end, and Taylor never had a line of dialogue that better suited her fighting maternal spirit.
A time capsule now of all that was considered controversial and gutsy in 1966.
If one examines Albee's The Zoo Story, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, and Tiny Alice as three views of the struggle for faith and the Christ myth and its nuances, the plays, on a particular level, gain a substantial meaning.
Scathing scream of a black comedy that's based on a play by Edward Albee.
Director Nichols, in his auspicious Hollywood debut, and scripter Ernest Lehman smartly keep Albee's corrosively witty black comedy intact, allowing their ensmeble, including Liz Taylor, to dig deep and turn intensely entertaining performances.
A merciless dissection of the intellectual's disease of ennui and gamesmanship.
Great cast plus great script equals great movie! Liz and Dick at their best.
They [Taylor and Burton] spark, shock, hurt, and shout down everyone they love, but mostly each other in this groundbreaking look at lovers and other strangers.
Stunning film version of the Albee play.
It earns the hell that it puts us through by never compromising its vision of it.
Part nightmare, part psychotherapy, part docudrama, part cultural meta-narrative, part transcendent myth.
Audience Reviews for Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
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- Nick: You're all crazy. Nuts.
- Martha: It is the refuge we take when the unreality of the world sits too heavy on our tiny heads.
- Martha: I disgust me! You know, there's only been one man in my whole life that has ever made me happy. You know that?
- Martha: George, my husband. George, who is out somewhere in the dark, who is good to me, whom i revile, who keeps learning the games we play as quickly as I can change them, who can make me happy and I do not wish to be happy. George and Martha...sad, sad, sad. Whom I will not forgive for having seen me and having said - Yes, this will do. Who has made the hideously hurting, the insulting mistake of loving ME and must be punished for it. Some day, some night, some stupid liquor-ridden night, I will go too far and I'll either break the man's neck or I'll push him for good, which is what I deserve.
- Martha: I am the Earth Mother and you are all flops.
- George: Martha, will you show her where we keep the, er, euphemism? [meaning, the bathroom]
- Martha: George and Martha; sad, sad, sad....
- George: Yes dear, but you mustn't bray.
- Martha: I don't bray!
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