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The Night of the Iguana (1964)

 -  Drama  -  6 August 1964 (USA)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 7,188 users  
Reviews: 74 user | 39 critic

A defrocked Episcopal clergyman leads a bus-load of middle-aged Baptist women on a tour of the Mexican coast and comes to terms with the failure haunting his life.

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Title: The Night of the Iguana (1964)

The Night of the Iguana (1964) on IMDb 7.8/10

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Charlotte Goodall
Skip Ward ...
Hank Prosner (as James Ward)
...
Cyril Delevanti ...
Nonno
Mary Boylan ...
Miss Peebles
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Storyline

The Rev. T. Lawrence Shannon has been living in Mexico for two years, working as a tourist guide for a cut-rate travel agency. Shannon lost his church and was defrocked after taking liberties with one of his parishioners. He's now accompanying a group of middle-aged ladies from Texas whose leader, Judith Fellowes, is keeping a close eye on her teenage ward, Charlotte Goodall, who definitely has an interest in the former priest. After Charlotte and Shannon spend the night together, Fellowes is out to have him fired and to keep her from communicating with his employer, Shannon strands them at a remote hotel run by his good friend Maxine Faulk. It's the arrival of Hannah Jelkes and her elderly grandfather that has the greatest impact however. Her approach to life and love forces Shannon to deal with his demons and re-evaluate his life. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

hotel | bus | guide | church | mexico | See more »

Taglines:

One man... three women... one night See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

6 August 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Night of the Iguana  »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TCM print)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to one of the biographies of Tennessee Williams, "The Kindness of Strangers," by Donald Spoto, the character of Maxine, who is portrayed in this film by Ava Gardner, was purportedly based upon Williams' landlady of the apartment he rented in Santa Monica while he was working at MGM Studios in the 1940s. Her mannerisms, attitudes and even her distinctive one-syllable laugh were detailed by Williams and are expertly performed by Gardner. See more »

Goofs

Ava Gardner removes several days of whisker growth from Burton's face and all traces of shaving cream with only four razor swipes. See more »

Quotes

T. Lawrence Shannon: [talking to Maxine] I wonder how long it takes to sweat the faculty of a Baptist Female College out of a bus that's parked in the sun when it's a 100 degrees in the shade.
See more »


Soundtracks

Mxican Hat Dance
("Jarabe Tapatio") (uncredited)
Traditional Mexican folk dance
Heard on record played during fight in the beach bar between Hank and the beach boys.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

The BEST film ever... or pretty close!
17 February 2004 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

First, you must understand the nature of Night of the Iguana. The story centers on Shannon (Burton), a life-long preacher caught in a philosophical crisis. His humanity clashes with his theology and leaves havoc in its wake. Removed from his position in a quiet Texas community after an affair with an underage girl, he takes a job in Puerto Vallarta as the tour guide for a rickety bus full of pious old women and one manipulative nymph (Lyon). Shannon is tortured by the girl's advances and finally gives in--only to be found out by her bullish chaperone. To save his job, Shannon hijacks the bus and takes the ladies to a remote motel high on the mountain, run by his ex-flame, Maxine (Gardner). Max is a bawdy, hard-drinking, hard-loving gal, not too keen on the new arrivals. She harbors an unrequited love for Shannon, however, so relents. Within moments of the troop's arrival, two stragglers also enter: Hannah (Kerr) is a penniless watercolor painter who, with her aged grandfather, Nonno--a supposedly renowned oral poet--travels from place to place selling their wares. They wearily hike up the mountain and plead for board, offering to paint or recite poetry to earn their keep.

As the characters struggle with their passions, their pride, and their self-definition, egos break and walls come down, exposing the underbelly of the human situation. They grapple with the questions and desires that plague us all. Who am I? Do my actions define me or do my thoughts? Why am I here? The answers come in ten-fold, and in a poignant moment, Kerr reveals our purpose on Earth: To connect with each other. To help each other through each day. To meet, to see, hear, and feel, and share what we have experienced. This is the meaning of life. Totall riveting. Especially if you travel to Puerto Vallarta and put these questions to the test.


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