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Slaughterhouse-Five (1972)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Sci-Fi  |  15 March 1972 (USA)
7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 8,781 users  
Reviews: 86 user | 32 critic

A man tells his story of how he became unstuck in time and abducted by aliens.

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(novel), (screenplay)
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Title: Slaughterhouse-Five (1972)

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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A soldier fighting in Germany during World War II finds himself living two lives simultaneously.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael Sacks ...
...
...
Edgar Derby
Sharon Gans ...
Valencia Merble Pilgrim
...
Montana Wildhack
Holly Near ...
Barbara Pilgrim
...
Robert Pilgrim
...
Roland Weary
Friedrich von Ledebur ...
German Leader (as Friedrich Ledebur)
Ekkehardt Belle ...
Young German Guard (as Nick Belle)
...
Lionel Merble
...
Wild Bob Cody
...
Prof. Rumfoord
Gary Waynesmith ...
Stanley
Richard Schaal ...
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Storyline

Using his own terminology, Billy Pilgrim is "unstuck in time", which means he is moving between different points in his life uncontrollably, although he is aware of it at certain of those points as witnessed by the letter to the editor he writes to the Ilium Daily News about his situation. Primarily, he is moving between three general time periods and locations. The first is his stint as a GI during WWII, when, as a pacifist, he was acting as assistant chaplain for his squad. This time is largely as a POW, where he was in Dresden the day of the bombing, spending it with among others an older compassionate GI named Edgar Derby, and a brash loudmouth GI named Paul Lazzaro. The second is his life as an optometrist in Ilium in upstate New York, eventually married to the wealthy and overbearing Valencia Merble, and having two offspring, Robert, who would spend his teenaged years as a semi-delinquent, and Barbara, who would end up much like her mother. And the third is as an abductee on the... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He survived the deadliest day on Earth! To enjoy the sexiest night in outer space! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Sci-Fi | War

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

15 March 1972 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Matadero cinco  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,200,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Ontario - edited)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)|

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kurt Vonnegut Jr., author of the book this film was adapted from, was a Prisoner of War in World War 2. He was captured during the Battle of the Bulge while a battalion scout with the 106 Infantry Division on December 22, 1944, and used these experiences in his novel when Billy Pilgrim is captured by the Germans and sent to a POW camp. See more »

Goofs

When the English soldiers are welcoming the American POWs to the mess hall, Paul Lazzaro is seen sitting down to eat, but in the next shot, he's standing up putting a safety razor in his jacket pocket. See more »

Quotes

Tralfamadorian speaker: We know how the world ends and it has nothing to do with Earth, except that it gets wiped out too.
Billy Pilgrim: Really? How does it end?
Tralfamadorian speaker: While we're experimenting with new fuels, a Tralfamadorian test pilot panics, presses the wrong button, and the whole universe disappears.
Billy Pilgrim: But you have to stop him. If you know this, can't you keep the pilot from pressing ...
Tralfamadorian speaker: He has always pressed it, and he always will. We have always let him, and we always will let him. The moment is structured that way.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Casting By (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Brandenburg Concerto No.4 in G major, BWV 1049 - 3rd movement 'Presto'
Written by Johann Sebastian Bach (as J.S. Bach)
Rudolf Serkin, Harpsichord
Alexander Schneider, Violin
Marlboro Festival Orchestra
Pablo Casals, Conductor
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Nearly as good as the book!
29 January 2002 | by (Barcelona Spain) – See all my reviews

This is a very clever, thoughtful, well made movie. It succeeded in doing what I thought was nearly impossible, i.e. to put this amazing book on film. There are one or two small points that keep me from giving this picture anything higher than a 7, the main one being Ron Liebman playing the Paul Lazzaro role - highly irritating. Other than that, a brave and imaginative, clever, witty film that I would heartily recommend to anyone.


17 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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