Cactus Flower


Cactus Flower

Critics Consensus

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Total Count: 17


Audience Score

User Ratings: 4,736
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Movie Info

This light romantic comedy finds a nurse secretly in love with her dentist employer. Stephanie has eyes for Dr. Winston, who has eyes for a Greenwich Village girl named Toni. The doctor is drawn to the pretty nurse at a club when she begins to dance.


Walter Matthau
as Dr. Julian Winston
Ingrid Bergman
as Stephanie Dickinson
Goldie Hawn
as Toni Simmons
Jack Weston
as Harvey Greenfield
Rick Lenz
as Igor Sullivan
Vito Scotti
as Senor Sanchez
Irene Hervey
as Mrs. Durant
Eve Bruce
as Georgia
Irwin Charone
as Store Manager
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News & Interviews for Cactus Flower

Critic Reviews for Cactus Flower

All Critics (17) | Top Critics (3) | Fresh (15) | Rotten (2)

  • The plot [from the play by Abe Burrows, based on a French play by Barillet & Gredy] is minimal and the lines are somewhat stilted and hollow, but if the direction was tighter and the mood kept light and airy it might have worked.

    Mar 26, 2009 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Top Critic
  • It comes as a pleasing jolt to find the youngster, Goldie Hawn, at the apex of the triangle, not only beautifully holding her own with the two veteran stars but also enhancing the content and flavor of the movie.

    May 10, 2005 | Full Review…
  • It really is Matthau, Miss Bergman and (with a marvelously expressive face) Miss Hawn who make "Cactus Flower" a success.

    Oct 23, 2004 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • this is a 1969 romantic comedy with style, wit, charm, sophistication, and several delightful moments of women's lib in action. It also happens to be a great time capsule of late '60s fashion, music, and culture in Manhattan.

    Feb 18, 2018 | Rating: A- | Full Review…
  • A misfire despite the presence of many of filmdom's best talents.

    May 8, 2017 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…
  • A sometimes forgettable romantic comedy.

    Aug 15, 2011 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Cactus Flower

  • Mar 14, 2019
    Once the movie morphs into a parody and of mid 20th century American machismo some of the earlier bad sex farce material becomes easier to forgive.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Aug 10, 2011
    This sex farce from the late 60's involves both the war between the sexes and the generation gap. Matthau is a swinging dentist suddenly set on marriage to Hawn (still in her bubbly Laugh-In ditz days) until the frump nurse who works for him begins to blossom. It's Ingrid's movie from there. Dated, sure, like when all go to a club and "I'm A Believer" is the slow jam, but that kinda adds to the charm of this star vehicle comedy of errors.
    Kevin M. W Super Reviewer
  • Sep 05, 2010
    On the surface this is just another romantic comedy, but if you see it, the characters are interesting and played by great actors, and the movie is very funny too. I liked it. Overall, it's predictable, but charming.
    Aj V Super Reviewer
  • Oct 14, 2009
    The film begins with 21-year-old Toni Simmons (Goldie Hawn) trudging across the road at night to post a letter. Subsequently, she returns to her apartment and attempts to gas herself using a "second-hand" stove. Fortunately, her neighbor, Igor Sullivan (Rick Lenz), smells the gas and rescues her from imminent death using rescue breathing, which evolves into a French kiss after Toni regains consciousness. The movie then moves to the cause of the suicide attempt. Toni's lover Julian (Walter Matthau), a dentist and philanderer, had previously told Toni that he has a wife and three kids, in order to avoid commitment issues. However, upon learning of the suicide attempt, he decides to rethink his bachelor status and to marry Toni, resulting in him needing a wife to divorce. In order to resolve his dilemma, Julian decides to ask Miss Stephanie Dickinson (Ingrid Bergman), his spinsterish Swedish nurse of ten years, to pose as his wife. At first unwilling, she ultimately accepts the role, since she has secretly developed a crush on Julian. Cactus Flower directed by Gene Saks is a very amusing film featuring three stars, Ingrid Berman, Walter Matthau, and a very young Goldie Hawn (Who won an Oscar for best supporting actress). The three central performances are very engaging making the audience hooked immediately. Hawn though is really what makes lifts this film into a golden comedic sucess. Cactus Flower is a entertaining, funny, and smart film, anchored by it's stars. Story: B+ Acting: A Direction: A Visuals: A- Overall: A- ***1/2 out of 4 stars
    Matthew R Super Reviewer

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