Monday, April 9, 2012
The Graduate (Special Edition)
The Graduate is a 1967 American comedy-drama motion picture directed by Mike Nichols. It is based on the 1963 novel The Graduate by Charles Webb, who wrote it shortly after graduating from Williams College. The screenplay was by Buck Henry, who makes a cameo appearance as a hotel clerk, and Calder Willingham. The film tells the story of Benjamin Braddock (played by Dustin Hoffman), a recent university graduate with no well-defined aim in life, who is seduced by an older woman, Mrs. Robinson (Anne Bancroft), and then proceeds to fall in love with her daughter Elaine (Katharine Ross).
In 1996, The Graduate was selected for preservation in the U.S. National Film Registry as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant". Initially, the film was placed at #7 on AFI's 100 Years... 100 Movies list in 1998. However, when AFI revised the list in 2007, the film was moved to #17.
Adjusted for inflation, the film is #21 on the list of highest-grossing films in the United States and Canada.
* Anne Bancroft as Mrs. Robinson
* Dustin Hoffman as Benjamin Braddock
* Katharine Ross as Elaine Robinson
* William Daniels as Mr. Braddock
* Murray Hamilton as Mr. Robinson
* Elizabeth Wilson as Mrs. Braddock
* Buck Henry as Hotel Clerk
* Brian Avery as Carl Smith
* Norman Fell as Mr. McCleery
* Marion Lorne as Singleman party guest
* Alice Ghostley as Singleman party guest
* Mike Farrell as a bellhop at the hotel
* Richard Dreyfuss as Boarding House Resident
* Ben Murphy as the shaving student in the fraternity house
* Kevin Tighe as Carter, Carl Smith's fraternity brother
* Eve McVeagh as party guest
* Hamilton Camp as Second Hotel Clerk
* Donald F. Glut as College Student
The film boosted the profile of folk-rock duo Simon & Garfunkel, whose soundtrack album The Graduate, on the strength of the hit single "Mrs. Robinson", rose to the top of the charts in 1968 (knocking off The Beatles' White Album). However, the version that appears in the film is markedly different from the hit single version, which would not be issued until Simon and Garfunkel's next album, Bookends. The actual film version of "Mrs. Robinson" does appear on The Graduate soundtrack LP.
According to a Variety article by Peter Bart in the 15 May 2005 issue, Nichols had become obsessed with Simon & Garfunkel's music while shooting the film. Lawrence Turman, his producer, made a deal for Simon to write three new songs for the movie. By the time they had nearly finished editing the film, Simon had only written one new song. Nichols begged him for more but Simon, who was touring constantly, told him he didn't have the time. He did play him a few notes of a new song he had been working on; "It's not for the movie... it's a song about times past — about Mrs. Roosevelt and Joe DiMaggio and stuff." Nichols advised Simon, "It's now about Mrs. Robinson, not Mrs. Roosevelt."