The Faust legend retold (loosely) and applied to a mentally disturbed patient in a hospital run by a doctor of dubious sanity himself. The patient (Burton) offers the innocent orderly (... See full summary »
The venomous and amoral wife of a wealthy architect tries, any way she can, to break up the blossoming romance between her husband and his new mistress; a good-natured young widow who holds a dark past.
Brian G. Hutton
Ellen Wheeler, a rich woman, is recovering from a nervous breakdown with the help of her husband and a good friend. One day, while staring out the window, she witnesses a murder. But does ... See full summary »
Brian G. Hutton
Film version of playwright Tennessee Williams' "The Milk Train Doesn't Stop Here Anymore" involves very wealthy Flora 'Sissy' Goforth, supposedly dying, and living in a large mansion on a secluded island with her servants and nurses; into her life comes a mysterious man, Angelo Del Morte and "the Witch of Capri." The mysterious man may or may not be "The Angel of Death". Written by
James Fox was originally supposed to play Chris Flanders, but Elizabeth Taylor insisted that her husband Richard Burton be cast instead. This was despite the fact that at 42 Burton was much older than the 20-something character. See more »
Near the beginning of the film, when Taylor is lying on the bed, she pushes a button on the cassette player at her bedside which introduces John Barry's soundtrack music. However, the button she pushes is "rewind", not "play". See more »
"Boom" has garnered itself a something of a reputation. With heavyweights Taylor, Burton, Noel Coward, Tennessee Williams and Joseph Losey, one might be tempted to think, how bad could it be? Well, it's a lot worse than you could possibly imagine.
The sad and disturbing fact of "Boom" is that it seems to signal the decline and fall of the aforementioned heavyweights. It was only director Joseph Losey who having plummeted the depths with "Modesty Blaise" and "Boom" (some may wish to add "Secret Ceremony"), managed to recuperate and in 1970 create his best work, the wonderful "Go-Between".
Saddest of all is the work of Tennesee Williams. From the mid-forties until the early sixties, Williams penned a number of plays which have gained classic status, remaining in theater repertory throughout the world, many becoming much praised films. When William's muse deserted him, probably owing to his notorious substance abuse, it deserted him for good. Williams at his best is an actor's dream, providing many unforgettable performances. (Were Ava Gardner or Deborah Kerr ever better than in "Night of the Iguana" ? ) Taylor in particular, shone in both "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" and "Suddenly Last Summer". There is an anecdote in which supposedly Taylor asks John Gielgud whether he would teach her to play Shakespeare, to which he replied "if you will teach me to play Tennessee Williams". Had Gielgud seen "Boom" he would have held his tongue. Taylor simply has never been worse, turning in a cringe inducing performance. Despite her face photographing well, she is decidedly podgy. Besides the physical decline, from this time onwards she would basically lose credibility as a serious actress with a string of completely forgettable (and worse) roles to her credit.
Much the same could be said of Burton. Following his short lived theatrical stardom, he won fame and fortune in Hollywood. But the body of his work from this point onwards (1968) would be unremarkable to say the least.
Noel Coward had long ceased being a force in the theater where his drawing room comedies had been replaced by the likes of Williams and the British "angry young men". He seems to be enjoying himself camping it up, but barely manages to amuse, that from the man who claimed such a talent.
The only cast member who maintains her dignity is young Joanna Shimkus, who in a few years would forego a promising screen career to become Mrs. Sidney Poitier.
"Boom" reeks of self indulgence; it's simply out of control. A rather sad pointer to careers gone wrong rather than a camp fun fest as some have suggested.
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