Harold Pinter - Rotten Tomatoes

Harold Pinter



It is difficult to determine what was in the psychological makeup of Briton Harold Pinter that resulted in a playwriting style distinguished by tension-filled pregnant pauses. Possibly this minimal use of wordage stemmed from Pinter's own communication problems with his Portuguese-born Jewish father. In the 1950s, Pinter attended RADA and hoped to be an actor under the Anglo-Saxon professional name David Baron. Instead he turned to writing, penning his first play, The Room, for the Bristol University drama department. After a lukewarm response to his first professionally produced play, The Birthday Party (1958), Pinter rose to fame with the 1960 stage production The Caretaker. With 1963's The Servant, Pinter made his bow as a screenwriter, and also essayed his first film role (he has since acted in other films, such as 1985's Turtle Diary, but hasn't declared any intention of making this his life's work). While many of his films (The Caretaker, The Birthday Party, the Oscar-nominated Betrayal) are adapted from his own plays, just as many have been screen originals. Pinter's film scripts aren't quite as enigmatic or confusing as his plays, in fact many have been models of clarity and succinctness, notably his Oscar-nominated adaptation of John Fowles' complex The French Lieutenant's Woman (1981). For a man who wasn't overly fond of excess verbiage, Pinter had considerable success on BBC radio, but here again it's what is not said in Pinter's plays that's most important. In 1974, Harold Pinter ventured into film directing with Butley, an over-the-top comedy by Peter Gray that's as far removed from the usual Pinter style as a Marx Brothers film.

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
36% Sleuth
  • Man on T.V.
  • Screenwriter
2007
No Score Yet Working With Pinter
  • Actor
2007
No Score Yet Beckett on Film
  • Actor
2001
77% The Tailor of Panama
  • Uncle Benny
2001
80% Wit
  • Mr. Bearing
2001
76% Mansfield Park
  • Sir Thomas Bertram
1999
No Score Yet Breaking The Code
  • John Smith
1997
50% Comfort of Strangers
  • Screenwriter
1997
97% The Remains of the Day
  • Screenwriter
1993
33% The Trial
  • Screenwriter
1993
23% The Handmaid's Tale
  • Screenwriter
1990
No Score Yet Reunion
  • Screenwriter
1989
90% Turtle Diary
  • Man in Bookshop
  • Screenwriter
1985
86% Betrayal
  • Screenwriter
1983
76% The French Lieutenant's Woman
  • Screenwriter
1981
44% The Last Tycoon
  • Screenwriter
1976
No Score Yet Rogue Male
  • Actor
1976
No Score Yet Butley
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
1974
No Score Yet The Homecoming
  • Screenwriter
1973
No Score Yet The Go-Between
  • Screenwriter
1970
No Score Yet The Rise and Rise of Michael Rimmer
  • Steven Hench
1970
No Score Yet American Film Theatre - Bundle
  • Director
1970
No Score Yet The Birthday Party
  • Screenwriter
1968
86% Accident
  • Mr. Bell
  • Screenwriter
1967
67% The Quiller Memorandum
  • Screenwriter
1966
88% The Servant
  • Screenwriter
  • Society Man
1964

TV

RATING TITLE CREDIT
No Score Yet Masterpiece
1971-2015
  • Screenwriter

Quotes from Harold Pinter's Characters