A psychosomatically deaf, dumb and blind boy becomes a master pinball player and, subsequently, the object of a religious cult.

Director:

Writers:

(by) (as 'The Who'), (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Lisztomania (1975)
Biography | Comedy | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Composer and pianist Franz Liszt attempts to overcome his hedonistic lifestyle while repeatedly being drawn back into it by the many women in his life and fellow composer Richard Wagner.

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: Roger Daltrey, Sara Kestelman, Paul Nicholas
Quadrophenia (1979)
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

London, 1965: Like many other youths, Jimmy hates the philistine life, especially his parents and his job in a company's mailing division. Only when he's together with his friends, a 'Mod' ... See full summary »

Director: Franc Roddam
Stars: Phil Daniels, Leslie Ash, Phil Davis
Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

From the early black and white days to their colourful hedonistic era, you will Rock! See them at their most creative, and destructive, and experience The Who: Here!

Director: Jeff Stein
Stars: Roger Daltrey, Keith Moon, John Entwistle
The Devils (1971)
Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

In 17th-century France, Father Urbain Grandier seeks to protect the city of Loudun from the corrupt establishment of Cardinal Richelieu. Hysteria occurs within the city when he is accused of witchcraft by a sexually repressed nun.

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: Vanessa Redgrave, Oliver Reed, Dudley Sutton
Horror | Sci-Fi | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A Harvard scientist conducts experiments on himself with a hallucinatory drug and an isolation chamber that may be causing him to regress genetically.

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: William Hurt, Blair Brown, Bob Balaban
Comedy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Scottish archaeologist Angus Flint discovers an odd skull amid the ruins of a convent that he is excavating. Shortly thereafter, Lady Sylvia Marsh returns to Temple House, a nearby mansion,... See full summary »

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: Amanda Donohoe, Hugh Grant, Catherine Oxenberg
Mahler (1974)
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Both trifles and structure are tossed out the door by director Ken Russell in this film. Here, historical content matters not so much as metaphors, feelings, emotions, and interpretations, ... See full summary »

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: Robert Powell, Georgina Hale, Lee Montague
Women in Love (1969)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The battle of the sexes and relationships among the elite of Britian's industrial Midlands in the 1920s. Gerald Crich and Rupert Berkin are best friends who fall in love with a pair of ... See full summary »

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: Alan Bates, Oliver Reed, Glenda Jackson
Valentino (1977)
Biography | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

In 1926 the tragic and untimely death of a silent screen actor caused female moviegoers to riot in the streets and in some cases to commit suicide - that actor was Rudolph Valentino. ... See full summary »

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: Rudolf Nureyev, Leslie Caron, Michelle Phillips
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Piano teacher Peter Ilych Tchaikovsky struggles against his homosexuality by marrying, but unfortunately he chooses a nymphomaniac whom he cannot satisfy.

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: Richard Chamberlain, Glenda Jackson, Max Adrian
Gothic (1986)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

The Shelleys visit Lord Byron and compete to write a horror story.

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: Gabriel Byrne, Julian Sands, Natasha Richardson
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Late on Guy Fawkes Day, 1892, Oscar Wilde arrives at a high-class brothel where a surprise awaits: a staging of his play "Salome," with parts played by prostitutes, Wilde's host, his lover ... See full summary »

Director: Ken Russell
Stars: Glenda Jackson, Stratford Johns, Nickolas Grace
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
The Preacher
...
Himself
...
...
...
...
...
Himself
...
Arthur Brown ...
The Priest
Victoria Russell ...
Sally Simpson
Ben Aris ...
Reverend Simpson
Edit

Storyline

Nora Walker is told that her British fighter pilot husband is missing in action and presumed killed in World War II. On V.E. Day, Nora gives birth to their son, who she names Tommy. While Tommy is an adolescent, Nora marries Frank, a shifty camp counselor. Shortly thereafter, Tommy suffers an emotionally traumatic experience associated with his father and step-father, which, based on things told to him at that time, results in him becoming deaf, dumb and blind, a situation which several people exploit for their own pleasure. As Nora tries several things to bring Tommy out of his psychosomatic disabilities, Tommy, now a young man, happens upon pinball as a stimulus. Playing by intuition, Tommy becomes a pinball master, which in turn makes him, and by association Nora and Frank, rich and famous. Nora literally shatters Tommy to his awakening, which ultimately leads to both the family's rise and downfall as people initially try to emulate Tommy's path then rebel against it. Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Your senses will never be the same

Genres:

Drama | Musical

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

26 March 1975 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Tommy by 'The Who'  »

Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(5 channel Stereo) (as Quintophonic Sound®)| (as Dolby System Noise Reduction - High Fidelity Optical Sound Track)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The setting of the film and the subsequent 1990s musical version are different from the original version recorded by The Who and the 1972 version recorded with the London Symphony Orchestra. In the original version, the setting is just after World War I and Tommy's mother's lover is murdered. In the film version, the setting is just after World War II and Tommy's father is murdered. In the musical version, the setting is just after World War II and Tommy's mother's lover is murdered. See more »

Goofs

In Eric Clapton's scene ("Eyesight To The Blind"), he begins the scene playing a Gibson Les Paul guitar, then switches to his favorite Fender Stratocaster, "Old Blackie". See more »

Quotes

Nora Walker Hobbs: What about the boy? What about the boy? What about the boy? He saw it all!
Frank Hobbs: He didn't see it, he didn't hear it, he will say nothing to no one.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Quand je ne dors pas (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Sparks
(uncredited)
Written by Pete Townshend
Performed by The Who
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Fantastic Rock Opera!
5 July 2004 | by (Midlands, England) – See all my reviews

I first saw this movie a few years back whilst going through my Uncle's collection of records, tapes and videos etc. To be fair I was fairly sceptical about the prospect of spending at Saturday night drinking and watching a musical film involving "The Who" (a band I had obviously heard of, but not actually really listened too) with my Uncle. However my Uncle has great taste in music and has introduced me to many great bands and albums over the years, especially 60's rock music.

I think my initial reaction to the film was it had some great scenes, mixing fantastic music with iconic imagery, some very interesting cast members, and a very strange dark humour throughout most of it.

The scenes which I were first really drawn to were 1951/what about the boy? (whether Oliver Reed can sing or not without severe editing, he fits his part perfectly and both he and Ann-Margaret shine during this scene), Acid Queen (an amazing performance by Tina Turner) and Amazing Journey.

Due to enjoying these songs/scenes so much I revisited the film a few times and then really found the true depth of the movie. The songs are top notch, with the above mentioned and others such as Christmas, Pinball Wizard, I'm Free, Sally Simpson and Listening To You amongst the best. Every scene is almost mesmerising in it's own way (apart from Eyesight to the blind, although I love Eric Clapton, I just do not enjoy this part at all).

I had been looking for this on DVD for sometime, and in the meantime had purchased the original CD (interesting how some songs are better on the CD whilst others translate better in the movie) as a substitute. I was of course extremely pleased at the recent 2 Disc Collectors Edition release and did not hesitate to make my purchase.

OK, the story is not your run of the mill, easy to understand type and I think it is open to all kinds of interpretations, the main thing is the movie is a visual and musical feast almost like an extended ultra good pop video.


27 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Tommy: Best album made into worst movie. brinsonmh
ABSOLUTELY HORRIBLE MUSIC!!! reiswig789
Resolution/Ending Question jmiller1918
There should be a new 'Tommy' film. techalex-418-622302
How many saw this on the big screen? lenono68
I wonder whatever happened to barry Winch... alisotom
Discuss Tommy (1975) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?