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Harold and Maude (1971)

GP  |   |  Comedy, Romance  |  20 December 1971 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 52,953 users  
Reviews: 301 user | 105 critic

Young, rich, and obsessed with death, Harold finds himself changed forever when he meets lively septuagenarian Maude at a funeral.



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Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Vivian Pickles ...
G. Wood ...
Judy Engles ...
Candy Gulf
Shari Summers ...
Edith Phern
Motorcycle Officer (as M. Borman)
Susan Madigan ...
Ray K. Goman ...
Police Officer (as Ray Goman)
Gordon De Vol ...
Police Officer (as Gordon DeVol)
Harvey Brumfield ...
Police Officer


Self-destructive and needy but wealthy teenager Harold is obsessed with death and spends his leisure time attending funerals, watching the demolition of buildings, visiting junkyards, simulating suicides trying to get the attention of his indifferent, snobbish and egocentric mother, and having sessions with his psychologist. When Harold meets the anarchic seventy-nine-year-old Maude at a funeral, they become friends and the old lady discloses other perspectives of the cycle of life for him. Meanwhile, his mother enlists him in a dating service and tries to force him to join the army. On the day of Maude's eightieth birthday, Harold proposes to her but he finds the truth about life at the end of hers. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


This is Harold. Fully equipped to deal with life. This is Maude. Harold's girlfriend. See more »


Comedy | Romance


GP | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:



Release Date:

20 December 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ensina-me a Viver  »

Box Office


$1,200,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Hal Ashby intended to film a scene of Harold and Maude making love, but Paramount dismissed this idea. See more »


About 50 minutes into the film, when Maude is doing donuts around the officer, the driver-side window of the truck is alternately up/down between shots. See more »


[first lines]
Mrs. Chasen: [after spotting Harold hanging from a noose in the living room] I suppose you think that's very funny, Harold... Oh, dinner at eight, Harold. And do try and be a little more vivacious.
See more »


Featured in Hurlyburly (1998) See more »


Tea for the Tillerman
(1970) (uncredited)
Written and Performed by Cat Stevens
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Ashby The Great
4 February 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Ashby was Ashby from the word go. Pristine without being precious, intelligently beautiful without being french, funny, funny, funny, bitter, provoking and sad. You can mix all of that and quite simply call it Ashby. What a delight! Elizabeth Bergner was suppose to play the part, marvelously written by Colin Higgins. Hal Ashby flew to London for a meeting with her, she didn't quite get it, she said aloud she couldn't work with a director who looked like Jesus Christ. Well sorry for her, but lucky for Ruth Gordon and lucky for us. As I saw the film after Rosemary's Baby I was kind of worried for Bud Cort for a little while. Ruth Gordon made her name as Dolly Levy in Thornton Wilder's "The Matchmaker" got an Oscar for Rosemary's Baby, wrote Adam's Rib with husband Garson Kanin. She was a woman for the ages and "Harold and Maude" is her present, her own tribute to an extraordinary life. I've shown the film to kids, 10, 12 years old and they fall in love with her. Bud Cort is the perfect foil for her designs. Cat Stevens and a scrumptious performance by Vivian Pickles, the unforgettable Isadora of Ken Russell's film of Duncan's life, wrap up this exquisite Hal Ashby masterpiece.

59 of 92 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
What's wrong with living past 80? Danofthewoods
Feel like a British Film...... Columbia75
My take on the sex scene klules664
How do you view the end? LadyC7869
Why does Harold visit funerals? misskassidee
I feel like I have finally seen the light! sweetmelley07
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