Writer: Calder Willingham, Buck Henry (Screenplay) Charles Webb (Novel)
Starring: Anne Bancroft, Dustin Hoffman, Katharine Ross, Williams Daniels, Murray Hamilton, Elizabeth Wilson
Plot: A disillusioned college graduate finds himself torn between his older lover and her daughter.
Tagline – This is Benjamin. He’s a little worried about his future.
Runtime: 1 Hour 46 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Great Coming of Age Movie
Story: The Graduate starts when college student Ben Braddock (Hoffman) returns home after the four years of studying, he has no idea what to do with his future and when he his father’s partner’s wife Mrs Robinson (Bancroft) tries to seduce him, he starts having an affair throughout the summer.
With the affair keeping the sex happening whenever they want it, when Mrs Robinson’s daughter Elaine (Ross) returns to town the two are set up by the rest of the parents. Soon Ben is torn between the two women as he searches for answers in his future.
Thoughts on The Graduate
Characters – Ben Braddock is the college student that has finished his studies and now he doesn’t know where to start the next chapter of his life, this changes when he ends up in an affair with Mrs Robinson before falling for her daughter complicating his life even more. This character shows how difficult life after college can be for anyone that spends years studying if they have no direction afterwards. Mrs Robinson is Ben’s father’s partner’s wife (wow that is a mouthful) who seduces Ben offering his sex in secret whenever he would like it, they have an affair and she becomes very demanding to escape her loveless marriage. Elaine is the daughter of Mrs Robinson that has grown up with Ben, also back from studying the two start dating against Mrs Robinson’s wish.
Performances – Dustin Hoffman in the leading role is great, he shows the nervous side to his character during the affair and the determination to be with Elaine. Anne Bancroft as the older woman coming into the young man’s life is great to, we see how easily she could have seduced someone. Katharine Ross is good as the daughter that has good chemistry with Hoffman.
Story – The story here follows a young man taking his first steps into the real world after college, he has no idea where he wants to go and ends up in the middle of a love triangle with a mother and daughter. This does touch on the difficult side of life after college even though we don’t spend enough time face this truth. The main part we focus on dealing with one man trying to understand love even when people are going to make things difficult for him. This does send the message about finding love before a career, which is strange. The idea works well for this story as does pace things perfectly well.
Comedy/Romance – The comedy comes from Dustin Hoffman’s reaction to most things, he looks awkward throughout which does make us laugh, the romance however is strange because why would the woman date the guy she knows had an affair with her mum, just why?
Settings – The film settings show the everyday life these people would be going through, we do get to head off to different cities as long as you know the university lay out you will know where we are.
Final Thoughts – This is one of the biggest coming of age movies of all time, it has iconic scenes and is one people will always remember the songs for.
Overall: One of the classics of cinema.