Husbands (1970)

PG-13  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  8 December 1970 (USA)
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Reviews: 27 user | 40 critic

A common friend's sudden death brings three men, married with children, to reconsider their lives and ultimately leave together. But mindless enthusiasm for regained freedom will be ... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mary Tynan
Jenny Lee Wright ...
Pearl Billingham
Noelle Kao ...
John Kullers ...
Meta Shaw Stevens ...
Annie (as Meta Shaw)
Leola Harlow ...
Delores Delmar ...
The Countess
Eleanor Zee ...
Mrs. Hines
Claire Malis ...
Stuart's Wife
Peggy Lashbrook ...
Diana Mallabee
Eleanor Cody Gould ...
'Normandy' Singer
Sarah Felcher ...


A common friend's sudden death brings three men, married with children, to reconsider their lives and ultimately leave together. But mindless enthusiasm for regained freedom will be short-lived. Written by Fabrizio Sabidussi

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A comedy about life, death and freedom


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic elements including sexual situations, language, drunkenness, and brief domestic violence | See all certifications »




| | |

Release Date:

8 December 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Husbands: A Comedy About Life, Death and Freedom  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$1,000,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(original release) | (TV) | | (dubbed)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Apparently, John Cassavetes spent nine months in the cutting room editing the film but is not billed as an editor on the picture. See more »


Harry: Gus, Archie, look what I did to that phone booth. I kicked the hell out of it. Yeah. Like I've been telling my wife for years. Aside from sex, and she's very good at it, God damn it, I like you guys better. I really do. Now, who the hell else could put up with me, huh? I'm a jerk, I know it. So, let's go home and get it over with.
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no closing credits and no "THE END" title card. The screen just goes black. In the opening credits, everyone involved in the film (even the "little people") are credited on two "tell all" title cards, right on down from the actors to the grips, a total of 82 credits. See more »


Referenced in Quo Vadis, Baby? (2005) See more »


Good Morning, Mr Zip-Zip-Zip!
(1918) (uncredited)
Written by Robert Lloyd
Sung a cappella by Peter Falk
See more »

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User Reviews

"Jazz" acting
20 March 1999 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

A Cassavetes film is like good jazz music: both are largely improvisational with the actor/musicians playing off each other. With Cassavetes, a basic written theme is provided and the actors embellish upon it; rhythms, tempos and emotional counterpoint are deftly manipulated. In HUSBANDS, Cassavetes is the bandleader, and Peter Falk and Ben Gazzara prove themselves to be two of the best "jazz actors" ever. HUSBANDS is "a guy film." Women have their "girl films," but here's one for we men (and for women who want to understand men). Cassavetes, Falk and Gazzara play three best friends who have just lost their fourth to a sudden death. The surviving three, all 40-something, run away from their marriages, jobs and other shackles for a few days in search of themselves, meaning, purpose. Along the way, we are intimately exposed to their fears, dreams, passions, disgusts, and their love for each other (expertly depicted male bonding: guys who understand each others' emotions, with masculinity remaining intact). Perhaps no other filmmaker/actor combo than Cassavetes and his "company" of actors have ever succeeded as well at depicting so uncompromisingly life's emotional truth. Mind you, Cassavetes' style and camera paints in broad loose strokes, so be forewarned if you dislike a hand-held shaky camera and sometimes out-of-focus shots as the camera operator tries to follow the improvising actor. But HUSBANDS has far less of this than, say, Cassavetes' FACES. And this is not all a downer film; there's much humor, too, in its sometimes bittersweet mood (for example, the Countess scene: "take your hand off my hand") All in all, and though a little long, a great film; well worth the time.

18 of 21 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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