5.7/10
204
7 user 3 critic

Great Catherine (1968)

G | | Comedy | 6 December 1968 (UK)
Slapstick comedy based on the play by George Bernard Shaw. A stiff English officer, captain Charles Edstaston (Peter O'Toole), and his fiancée Claire arrive in St. Petersburg. Edstaston is ... See full summary »

Director:

Reviews
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

The Dutch exotic dancer Mata Hari is accused of spying for Germany during the First World War.

Director: Jean-Louis Richard
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Jean-Louis Trintignant, Claude Rich
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
Director: Jean-Louis Richard
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Charles Denner, Elisabeth Wiener
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

10 years ago, François Nolan and his brother have been betrayed by one of their accomplices after a break-in. During the fight with the police, Francois's brother was killed, and a cop ... See full summary »

Director: Roger Pigaut
Stars: Michel Bouquet, Serge Reggiani, Hubert Deschamps
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

This is about the execution of 21 carmelite nuns in the latter stages of the terror during the French Revolution.

Directors: Philippe Agostini, Raymond Leopold Bruckberger
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Alida Valli, Madeleine Renaud
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

In Italy, a vacationing Englishman leaves his girlfriend for a wealthy mysterious American widow who's sailing the seas in search of her long-lost sailor friend.

Director: Tony Richardson
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Ian Bannen, Vanessa Redgrave
Mademoiselle (1966)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In a French village, Manou is an Italian logger, virile, with a broad laugh. He can't say no to women's sexual invitations, and jealous villagers blame him for recent fires and a flood. He ... See full summary »

Director: Tony Richardson
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Ettore Manni, Keith Skinner
Banana Peel (1963)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
Director: Marcel Ophüls
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Jean-Paul Belmondo, Claude Brasseur
Chère Louise (1972)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A young woman, Louise, is a lecturer in a provincial town where she meets an Italian immigrant. The film retraces their relationship.

Director: Philippe de Broca
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Julian Negulesco, Didi Perego
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Two riders ride to Paris carrying a message for their respective lords. One is a faithful servant of Henry of Navarre, the other of the Duke of Guise.

Director: Jean Dréville
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Armando Francioli, Robert Porte
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A wealthy industrialist discovers his wife is having an affair and decides to exact revenge by blackmailing her under an assumed identity.

Director: Édouard Molinaro
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Gérard Oury, Philippe Nicaud
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Joana is a sophisticated, beautiful woman, so she has a choice of lovers, and destinies. She will let down Pierre, the French consul at Sao Paulo, and with him the frivolity of tea-parties ... See full summary »

Director: Carlos Diegues
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Eliezer Gomes, Carlos Kroeber
Eva (1962)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A raw Welsh novelist in Venice is humiliated by a money-loving Frenchwoman who erotically ensnares him.

Director: Joseph Losey
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Stanley Baker, Virna Lisi
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
The British Ambassador
...
Sergeant
...
Dowager Lady Gorse
Marie Kean ...
Kenneth Griffith ...
...
...
Varinka
Gerald Lawson
Lea Seidl ...
Grand Duchess
Oliver MacGreevy ...
General Pskov
Norma Foster ...
Mongol
James Mellor ...
Colonel Pugachov
Edit

Storyline

Slapstick comedy based on the play by George Bernard Shaw. A stiff English officer, captain Charles Edstaston (Peter O'Toole), and his fiancée Claire arrive in St. Petersburg. Edstaston is brought to the imperial court to seek audience with the empress Catherine (Jeanne Moreau). He obtains an interview with her courtier, the drunken Potemkin (Zero Mostel), who ends up carrying him in his arms to the empress and dumping him into her royal bed. From this moment on, the hapless Edstaston endeavours to escape from the clutches of the sex-crazed empress and leave the city with his English fiancée. Written by cocoken

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

By day she was Catherine the Queen. By night she was Catherine the Great.

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

| |

Release Date:

6 December 1968 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Catalina la Grande  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

(Technicolor)
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The last film in which Jack Hawkins' voice is heard. In subsequent films he would be dubbed by other actors due to his problems with throat cancer. See more »

Quotes

Potemkin: Have you had a college education, darling? I have.
Capt. Charles Edstaston: Certainly. I am a bachelor of arts.
Potemkin: Once she know you are a bachelor, Catherine will supply the arts.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The last line of the end credits reads: "With Scobie As The Ambassador's Dog". See more »

Connections

Version of Catherine the Great (1996) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A Distant Memory Now
14 August 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Bernard Shaw wrote GREAT CATHERINE (WHOM GLORY STILL ADORES) back in the teens, and it is occasionally revived. Not all of his plays get revived. In particular his "short" plays. GREAT CATHERINE is a one act play, and it runs about ninety minutes (short, in comparison to say PYGMALION or MAJOR BARBARA). As it is a historical play, one has to note that Shaw - while he tried to be accurate on his history in his plays - based his history on the current state of knowledge, which was usually not as correct as we now know.

Basically, GREAT CATHERINE is about how a young British officer is sent to the court of Catherine the Great of Russia, one of the most fascinating rulers in Europe in the 18th Century. He is involved not only with her, but with her crafty chief minister, Potemkin (whom the battleship in the classic Eisenstein silent film is named for). The officer attracts her attention because he is handsome, and the British Minister is fully willing to let him see the Empress, as he may hear something of use and he may "ease" Anglo-Russian relations. As it turns out, the young ninny is such a believer in middle class morality that he blows a great opportunity, loses a chance to witness a great figure in world history, and even - unwittingly - so misunderstands things that he accidentally insults her. Only her own sense of values keeps her from taking up an offer from a furious Potemkin to have the young man killed.

The basics of the play are kept in the movie, but it was jazzed up a bit. Jeanne Moreau makes a very attractive, sexy, alluring Empress. Peter O'Toole is a proper aristocratic numskull. Akim Tamiroff is a comic guard, browbeaten by his boss Potemkin (played with relish by Zero Mostel - a nice historical part for him for a change). Also, in one of his last roles, the now tragically silenced Jack Hawkins, giving his all as the British Ambassador.

I have given the film a 6, for it's attempt to record a minor play by Shaw, for it's cast, and for a scene I liked that dates the play - when O'Toole is supposed to show how the battle of Bunker's Hill was fought. The confrontation ends with the total demolition of the model of the battlefield. It is a minor sequence, but I did like it. But for all I do like about the film, if you are interested in the best work of George Bernard Shaw I would not go to this film first.


11 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?