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Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
100
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 26 June 2017
I love to watch this film late at night, its just the kind of film that you can snuggle down to. Its shot in black and white. The chemistry between Burton and Taylor is electric in this film and the characters are totally believable. But there again they are going to be because you're watching two of the worlds greatest actors. It's truly fascinating for those who appreciate great casting and acting. Sit back and watch the masters at work.
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on 29 June 2017
Great acting from "the couple".
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on 26 May 2017
Great movie ,good buy
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on 4 April 2017
Enjoyed this film.
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on 28 April 2017
Excellent
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on 18 March 2017
Good
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on 27 April 2017
Classic
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on 1 November 2009
There are several DVD transfers available on this site. I haven't seen the others, but this version is beautifully clear, with excellent sound. There's commentary from director Mike Nichols and cinematographer Haskell Wexler, no mean director in his own right Medium Cool [DVD] [1969] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC].

Whenever I get into the same old argument with a young sprog about whether Elizabeth Taylor can act, I always give them "Who's Afraid..?" It is unanswerable. She is pitch perfect. Every nuance, every gesture, every intonation is there. Oscars often go to the wrong person, but this performance blew all others in 1966 out of the water, and got Liz her second. There are several extended takes where the camera is metaphorically on its knees to her, and rightly so. Her intensity will have your heart in your mouth. It should however be noted that Burton as husband George matches her in his more solid, understated way, and provides the bedrock which allows her to fly.

It's also worth saying that although this is an adaptation of a stage play, it avoids most suggestions of stageyness, apart from too many melodramatic statements of Total War (Albee's fault, not the director's). It works brilliantly as a film. The images are beautifully composed, particularly long shots in the garden of characters alone in the dark, calling like lost children. At the time it came out, Nichols was much criticised for opening the play out, but doing so adds richness. The garden is a place of desolation and confession; the little roadside bar just another claustrophobic venue for George and Martha to drag their misery into. The camera is always at the right place, looking at the right things, and the editing is as sharp as a button.

So powerful are the central performances that many viewers took the film for autobiography and imagine that the Burton-Taylor relationship was really like this. So it's worth insisting that this is not some kind of therapeutic or self-indulgent psychodrama for the principals, but superlative craft from two supreme practitioners. It is also, finally, a love story, and the need these two damaged characters have for each other is ultimately very moving.
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on 22 June 2017
I was surprised to see that one of your reviewers found it boring. I think that this movie grips you from the first scene until the last reel.George and Martha (Burton and Taylor) are an unhappily married couple resident at a college.From the time you see them leave the party they have been attending to walk home, it is clear that they are both heavily inebriated. They get in and Martha continues to taunt George in the vilest manner. Martha appears to have the upper hand until the young couple played by George Segal and Sandy Dennis appear. Drink after drink are swallowed by these four characters until they are all smashed and George and Martha can use the young couple as a way of hurting each other by drawing them into their cruel games playing. Quickly realising that George Segal's ambitions as a master will make him a willing participant. They all get involved. There is a high level of unpleasant games playing and shouting throughout the picture.
Many people think Elizabeth Taylor cannot act but this Oscar-winning performance puts those thoughts to rest. Dressed blowsily, chain smoking, consuming drink after drink, shrieking loudly and unafraid to clump inelegantly .she perfectly portrays this middle-aged, rather promiscuous woman. Burton gives a great performance too, coming out on top in the end .This is a great film, don't allow yourselves to miss it.
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on 20 February 2015
film purchased for member of family, so no comment
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