The Birthday Party

  • 1968
  • Movie
  • G
  • Drama

An early film by the director of THE FRENCH CONNECTION (1971), William Friedkin, who sadly over-directed this adaptation of Harold Pinter's play. Shaw plays a pianist who was once involved in organized crime and has been hiding out at Nichols' boarding house for nearly a year. The action takes place at an uneasy birthday party thrown in the somewhat unstable...read more

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An early film by the director of THE FRENCH CONNECTION (1971), William Friedkin, who sadly over-directed this adaptation of Harold Pinter's play. Shaw plays a pianist who was once involved in organized crime and has been hiding out at Nichols' boarding house for nearly a year. The action

takes place at an uneasy birthday party thrown in the somewhat unstable Shaw's honor. Tafler and McGee, two hoods who have come after Shaw, show up and mentally torture him to the point of madness before they take him for a one-way ride. Pinter is always difficult to adapt to the screen, and

Friedkin does a nice job with the actors. The handling of Pinter's cryptic dialog is superb, but the director clouds and confuses the film with overly tricky camera placement and an annoying switch from color to black-and-white during a lengthy game of blind man's bluff played at the party.

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  • Rating: G
  • Review: An early film by the director of THE FRENCH CONNECTION (1971), William Friedkin, who sadly over-directed this adaptation of Harold Pinter's play. Shaw plays a pianist who was once involved in organized crime and has been hiding out at Nichols' boarding hou… (more)

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