MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 2,240 this week

Picnic (1955)

 -  Drama | Romance  -  16 February 1956 (USA)
7.2
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.2/10 from 5,662 users  
Reviews: 111 user | 41 critic

Emotions are ignited amongst the complacent townsfolk when a handsome drifter arrives in a small Kansas community on the morning of the Labour Day picnic.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (play)
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $9.99 on Amazon Instant Video

Editors' Spotlight

Live Chat with Keanu Reeves

We conducted a Live Chat with Keanu about his upcoming film John Wick.


User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 27 titles
created 16 Feb 2012
 
a list of 49 titles
created 01 Jan 2013
 
a list of 35 titles
created 06 Jan 2013
 
a list of 36 titles
created 8 months ago
 
a list of 35 titles
created 6 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Picnic" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Picnic (1955)

Picnic (1955) on IMDb 7.2/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Picnic.

User Polls

Won 2 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Strung-out junkie deals with daily demoralizing drug addiction while crippled wife and card sharks continue to pull him down.

Director: Otto Preminger
Stars: Frank Sinatra, Kim Novak, Eleanor Parker
Comedy | Romance | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A modern-day witch likes her neighbor but despises his fiancee, so she enchants him to love her instead... only to fall in love with him for real.

Director: Richard Quine
Stars: James Stewart, Kim Novak, Jack Lemmon
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A widowed doctor of both Chinese and European descent falls in love with a married American correspondent in Hong Kong during China's Communist revolution.

Directors: Henry King, Otto Lang
Stars: William Holden, Jennifer Jones, Torin Thatcher
Picnic (TV Movie 2000)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

The son of the richest man in town wants to marry the town's beauty queen, but then she meats an interesting stranger who just got off the train.

Director: Ivan Passer
Stars: Bonnie Bedelia, Josh Brolin, Ben Caswell
Peyton Place (1957)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A peaceful New England town hides secrets and scandals.

Director: Mark Robson
Stars: Lana Turner, Lee Philips, Lloyd Nolan
Pal Joey (1957)
Drama | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Joey Evans is charming, handsome, funny, talented, and a first class, A-number-one heel. When Joey meets the former chorus girl ("She used to be 'Vera...with the Vanishing Veils'") and now ... See full summary »

Director: George Sidney
Stars: Rita Hayworth, Frank Sinatra, Kim Novak
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A suburban architect loves his wife but is bored with his marriage and with his work, so he takes up with the neglected, married beauty who lives down the street.

Director: Richard Quine
Stars: Kirk Douglas, Kim Novak, Ernie Kovacs
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

An Italian-American neighborhood in Louisiana is disturbed when truck driver Rosario Delle Rose is killed by police while smuggling. His buxom widow Serafina miscarries, then over a period ... See full summary »

Director: Daniel Mann
Stars: Anna Magnani, Burt Lancaster, Marisa Pavan
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Robert Lomax tired of working in an office, wants to be an artist. So he moves to Hong Kong to try his hand at painting. Finding a cheap hotel he checks in, only to find it's used by ... See full summary »

Director: Richard Quine
Stars: William Holden, Nancy Kwan, Sylvia Syms
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
Director: Alfred E. Green
Stars: William Holden, Frances Dee, Grant Mitchell
Comedy | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Comedy-drama about life on a not particularly important ship of the US Navy during WW2.

Directors: John Ford, Mervyn LeRoy, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Henry Fonda, James Cagney, William Powell
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

The life story of the famous pianist and band-leader of the 1930s and 1940s.

Director: George Sidney
Stars: Tyrone Power, Kim Novak, Victoria Shaw
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Betty Field ...
...
...
...
...
...
Nick Adams ...
...
...
Christine Schoenwalder (as Elizabeth W. Wilson)
...
Edit

Storyline

The morning of a small town Labor Day picnic, a drifter (Hal Carter) blows into town to visit an old fraternity buddy (Alan Benson) who also happens to be the son of the richest man in town. Hal is an egocentric braggart - all potential and no accomplishment. He meets up with Madge Owens, the town beauty queen and girlfriend of Alan Benson. Written by Erik L. Ellis <ele@eece.unm.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Electrically attracted to each other...Overwhelmingly engulfed by it...Guiltily in love! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

16 February 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Picknick  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The climactic picnic scenes had to be shot on a soundstage due to rainstorms. See more »

Goofs

During the picnic and up through her arriving home late that night, Madge's hair length is considerably shorter than in the rest of the film. See more »

Quotes

Rosemary Sidney: Look at that sunset, Howard!
Howard Bevans: A sunset's a beautiful thing, all right.
Rosemary Sidney: It's like the daytime didn't want to end, isn't it? It's like the daytime was gonna put up a big scrap, set the world on fire to keep the night from creeping on.
See more »

Connections

Edited into Visions of Light (1992) See more »

Soundtracks

It's a Blue World
(uncredited)
Written by Bob Wright and Chet Forrest
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A Great Sense of Cinema
13 August 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Picnic was the second film that acclaimed stage director Joshua Logan did, adapting work that he had previously directed for Broadway. I absolutely marvel at Logan's sense of the cinema for someone who worked primarily in the theater. Had he concentrated on the screen instead, I'm sure Logan would have been as acclaimed as John Ford or Alfred Hitchcock or even Orson Welles.

William Inge's play Picnic is set in a small Kansas town where drifter William Holden comes to town to look up and old friend from college, Cliff Robertson. As it happens he arrives on Labor Day and the town is having their annual Labor Day picnic. In that 24 hours he changes the lives of all around him, mostly for the better. Especially the women folk.

Holden does a very good job in a role he was really miscast in. The part should have gone to Marlon Brando or James Dean or even Paul Newman. Newmwn was in the original Broadway cast, but in the Cliff Robertson part. The lead was done by Ralph Meeker.

The women of all ages go for Holden unbridled sexuality from Verna Felton, Betty Field, Rosalind Russell, Kim Novak, and Susan Strassberg in descending order of age. They all kind of like him, but Holden goes for Novak who's Robertson's girl. I think you can figure the rest of it out.

Arthur O'Connell as confirmed bachelor/boyfriend of Russell got an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor, but lost to Jack Lemmon in Mister Roberts which incidentally was directed by Joshua Logan on Broadway and uncredited for the screen when John Ford left the film. But the performance that was absolutely the best was that of Rosalind Russell as the schoolteacher who's approaching what would be called spinster hood and not liking it a bit. She's sending out a booty call to Holden that is unmistakable.

In her memoirs Russell said that when Logan asked her to take Eileen Heckart's part from Broadway, he didn't even get to finish the sentence when she agreed. Picnic was playing on Broadway the same time she was doing Wonderful Town and she admired the play by Inge and the work of Joshua Logan very much.

I like the individual performances in Picnic, but even more I like the way Logan used the whole town of Hutchinson, Kansas where the film was shot on location as a stage setting. One of the best transferals from stage to cinema ever and it sure helped to have someone at the helm who knew the property and knew how to accomplish his goal.

Picnic is a great view of America in the red states in the Eisenhower years and should not be missed.


36 of 45 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Holden and Novak miscast jimprideaux2
Paul Newman PinkIcicle
Favorite scenes in 'Picnic'? thchicago
Soundtrack for Picnic not available! Why? denver46
What book was Millie reading? kerprice
what year does it take place in? MichaelAngels
Discuss Picnic (1955) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page