MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 1,820 this week

The Boys in the Band (1970)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  17 March 1970 (USA)
7.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.8/10 from 2,209 users  
Reviews: 69 user | 34 critic

Tempers fray and true selves are revealed when a heterosexual is accidentally invited to a homosexual party.

Director:

Writers:

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

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 45 titles
created 03 Nov 2010
 
a list of 22 titles
created 26 Feb 2012
 
a list of 26 titles
created 15 Apr 2012
 
a list of 24 titles
created 29 Jul 2012
 
a list of 33 titles
created 27 Feb 2013
 

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: The Boys in the Band (1970)

The Boys in the Band (1970) on IMDb 7.8/10

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

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Boys in the Band.
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The story of a forbidden and secretive relationship between two cowboys and their lives over the years.

Director: Ang Lee
Stars: Jake Gyllenhaal, Heath Ledger, Michelle Williams
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A bitter aging couple with the help of alcohol, use a young couple to fuel anguish and emotional pain towards each other.

Director: Mike Nichols
Stars: Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, George Segal
All About Eve (1950)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

An ingenue insinuates herself in to the company of an established but aging stage actress and her circle of theater friends.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Bette Davis, Anne Baxter, George Sanders
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A teenage hustler and a young man obsessed with alien abductions cross paths, together discovering a horrible, liberating truth.

Director: Gregg Araki
Stars: Brady Corbet, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Elisabeth Shue
A Single Man (2009)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An English professor, one year after the sudden death of his boyfriend, is unable to cope with his typical days in 1960s Los Angeles.

Director: Tom Ford
Stars: Colin Firth, Julianne Moore, Matthew Goode
Priest (1994)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Father Greg Pilkington (Linus Roache) is torn between his call as a conservative Catholic priest and his secret life as a homosexual with a gay lover, frowned upon by the Church. Upon ... See full summary »

Director: Antonia Bird
Stars: Linus Roache, Tom Wilkinson, Robert Carlyle
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Brick, an alcoholic ex-football player, drinks his days away and resists the affections of his wife, Maggie. His reunion with his father, Big Daddy, who is dying of cancer, jogs a host of memories and revelations for both father and son.

Director: Richard Brooks
Stars: Elizabeth Taylor, Paul Newman, Burl Ives
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

A group of 1950s high schoolers come of age in a bleak, isolated, atrophied West Texas town that is slowly dying, both economically and culturally.

Director: Peter Bogdanovich
Stars: Timothy Bottoms, Jeff Bridges, Cybill Shepherd
Certificate: M Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

The lives of a disparate group of contestants intertwine in an inhumanely grueling dance marathon.

Director: Sydney Pollack
Stars: Jane Fonda, Michael Sarrazin, Susannah York
Boogie Nights (1997)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

The story of a young man's adventures in the Californian pornography industry of the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson
Stars: Mark Wahlberg, Julianne Moore, Burt Reynolds
Network (1976)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A television network cynically exploits a deranged former anchor's ravings and revelations about the news media for its own profit.

Director: Sidney Lumet
Stars: Faye Dunaway, William Holden, Peter Finch
Making Love (1982)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A successful young L.A. doctor and his equally successful television-producer wife find their happily-ever-after life torn assunder when he suddenly confronts his long-repressed attraction ... See full summary »

Director: Arthur Hiller
Stars: Michael Ontkean, Kate Jackson, Harry Hamlin
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Kenneth Nelson ...
Michael
Frederick Combs ...
Donald
...
Emory
Laurence Luckinbill ...
Hank
Keith Prentice ...
Larry
...
Alan McCarthy
Reuben Greene ...
Bernard
...
Cowboy Tex
...
Harold
Edit

Storyline

It's Harold's birthday, and his closest friends throw him a party at Michael's apartment. Among Harold's presents is "Cowboy", since Harold may have trouble finding a cute young man on his own now that he's getting older. As the party progresses the self-deprecating humor of the group takes a nasty turn as the men become drunker. Climaxed by a cruel telephone "game" where each man must call someone and tell him (or her?) of his love for them. Written by Ron Kerrigan <mvg@whidbey.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

"The Boys in the Band" ...is not a musical. See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

17 March 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Boys in the Band  »

Box Office

Budget:

$5,500,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the original contract to make the film, seen on screen in the documentary Making the Boys (2011), the original budget for the film "The Boys in the Band" was $1.25 million. See more »

Goofs

When Michael is putting the ribbon on the birthday gift, the bow appears on the package between shots. See more »

Quotes

Harold: Give me librium or give me meth!
See more »

Connections

References Midnight Cowboy (1969) See more »

Soundtracks

Anything Goes
Written by Cole Porter (uncredited)
Performed by Harpers Bizarre
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
"King of the Pig People!"
13 December 2003 | by (San Francisco) – See all my reviews

I suppose all gay men must have a reaction to BITB one way or another. It must be respected for being incredibly daring when it came out: the first play to focus exclusively on gay characters and show us as average men with basically normal lives. (As late as the 60s few plays, & far fewer films, even acknowledged gays existed; those that did used gays as symbols of abasement or decadence. 'Different from the Others'-1919 and 'Victim'-1961 were isolated exceptions.) The sexually frank dialog was also a groundbreaker. A gay friend who saw the original stage production remembers being astonished by Harold's line, 'Your lips are turning blue. You look like you've been rimming a snowman!' Crowley wins laurels for being the first playwright to present our community without apology.

That said, I admit I found the film dated when I first saw it in the 80s, when I was in my 20s. Watching it now, I have a different reaction. For one thing, I adore the brilliant dialog. What an inspiration to write a comedy of manners set in the archly mannered world of New York gays! There hasn't been a screenplay with this many epigrams per inch since 'All About Eve.'

The first act is funny and marvelous. The second act teeters into melodrama, stealing the device of all-night boozing and humiliating party games to 'strip characters bare' from 'Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?' Michael, the host and game emcee, is such a bitch that we can't feel sympathy when Harold confronts and effectively destroys him. Kenneth Nelson's performance as Michael doesn't help: it's like an acting class exercise, all shrieking and hysterics.

While the ensemble as a whole is strong, Leonard Frey's brilliant, definitive Harold enables him to walk off with the film. The straight Cliff Gorman does fine work as the flaming, ultimately touching Emory; Keith Prentice is very good as the one well-adjusted party goer, the happy sensualist Larry; and Reuben Greene and Frederick Combs make the best of underwritten characters (Combs get lots of chances to show his rear end to great advantage, including a gratuitous nude shot).

Besides good acting, the film has other points to recommend it. The film's 'opening up' of the play is never intrusive or contrived. Friedkin's camera never seems trapped, though almost the entire picture is shot in one apartment, and he keeps the story moving swiftly along. And Crowley shows courage in leaving the question of Alan's sexuality somewhat ambiguous, despite his affirming his wife as the person he truly loves, thereby rejecting Michael as a gay man and precipitating his collapse.

The themes of love, truth, self-loathing, friendship and relationships speak to audiences gay & straight. They are dealt with in a well made film and a script crafted with wit and humor. While the 'if we could just not hate ourselves so much' viewpoint does date the movie, it has more skill and substance than 75% of the films on the market-and (I agree with other posters) 99% of the 'gay' films out there now.


53 of 55 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Bernard kwlev
5.5 million dollar budget!???!!! xtopherson
Michael's gift to Harold albea00
Michael : Rich Kid or Kept Man tunaandmaple
DVD Streets Nov. 11 cengiz01
Why does Michael turn strawdawg
Discuss The Boys in the Band (1970) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?