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Seconds (1966)

7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 9,384 users  
Reviews: 120 user | 97 critic

An unhappy middle-aged banker agrees to a procedure that will fake his death and give him a completely new look and identity - one that comes with its own price.

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Title: Seconds (1966)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Nora Marcus
...
...
Old Man
...
Mr. Ruby
...
...
Charlie
...
Dr. Morris
Khigh Dhiegh ...
Davalo
Frances Reid ...
Emily Hamilton
...
John
John Lawrence ...
Texan
Elisabeth Fraser ...
Plump Blonde
Dodie Heath ...
Sue Bushman (as Dody Heath)
Robert Brubaker ...
Mayberry
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Storyline

Middle-aged banker Arthur Hamilton is given the opportunity to start a completely new life when he receives calls from his old friend Charlie. The only problem is that Charlie is supposed to be dead. Hamilton is eventually introduced to a firm that will fake his death and create an entirely new look and life for him. After undergoing physical reconstruction surgery and months of training and psychotherapy, Hamilton returns to the world in the form of artist Tony Wilson. He has a nice house in Malibu and a manservant, a company employee who is there to assist him with his adjustment. He finds that the life he had hoped for isn't quite what he expected and asks the company to go through the process with surprising results. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Who are SECONDS? The answer is almost too terrifying for words. From the bold, bizarre best-seller. The story of a man who buys for himself a totally new life. A man who lives the age-old dream -- If only I could live my life all over again. See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some nudity | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 November 1966 (Brazil)  »

Also Known As:

Död man lever  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (re-release: 1996)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director John Frankenheimer wanted to cast Laurence Olivier, then considered the world's greatest actor, as the lead and the actor agreed, but the producers did not want Olivier as he was not a box office draw. Frankenheimer has gone on record as stating it was incredibly embarrassing to go back to Olivier and tell him he couldn't do the film. Rock Hudson was cast instead. Ironically, Olivier won his seventh Oscar nomination for Othello (1965) the year "Seconds" was released. See more »

Goofs

When Tony is being shown the blackmail film that is calculated to get him to cooperate, the blackmailer sits in the guest chair next to Tony. After an assistance enters the room, the blackmailer rises to greet him, then returns to the chair to find Tony's hat has mysteriously appeared on the chair, and has to be removed for him to sit down again. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Man in Station: Mr. Hamilton?
Arthur Hamilton: Yes?
[Man in train station hands Hamilton a folded sheet of paper and turns to walk away; Hamilton stares after him, then opens the folded paper to find an address, with no explanation]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Game (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

Love Is Just around the Corner
(1934)
Music by Lewis E. Gensler
Lyrics by Leo Robin
Played at the party
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Even though "The Manchurian Candidate" has it beat for entertainment value, "Seconds" is overall a superior film
16 December 2006 | by (Worcester, MA) – See all my reviews

"Seconds" is the other masterpiece of Frankenheimer from the 60s, the other being "The Manchurian Candidate". It manages to be even more underrated than that classic. The film was far to grim and depressing to find an audience when released, and its still unjustly ignored. This is a shame, because its one of the most stunningly original and uncompromising films to come out of Hollywood. Even though "The Manchurian Candidate" has it beat for entertainment value, "Seconds" is overall a superior film. The protagonist is fascinating and sympathetic. One of the most impressive aspects is how his personality and emotions manage to remain consistent despite being played by two different actors (John Randolph and Rock Hudson). Hudson is an actor who is considered by some to be simply a matinée idol, but occasionally he managed to turn in a good performance. This is easily his best work.

One of the most effective aspects of the film is that its science fiction that is both intelligent and not implausible. Its a shame that in the post "Star Wars" era, mature science fiction films are a rarity. It also works as a paranoia thriller but without the dark humor and satire of "The Manchurian Candidate". The only real flaw I felt was the hippie orgy scene in the middle. It stops the film dead in its track and I get the feeling its inclusion was simply to make the film more relevant. Its the only dated aspect. Outside of that blunder, this film is a masterpiece. The terrific supporting cast of character actors includes familiar faces such as Khigh Dhiegh ("The Manchurian Candidate"), Wesley Addy ("Kiss Me Deadly"), and Murray Hamilton ("Jaws"). (8/10)


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