Willy Loman is an over-the-hill salesman who faces a personal turning point when he loses his job and attempts to make peace with his family: Willy's long-suffering wife Linda, and Biff and Happy, his troubled sons and his life.
Salesman Willy Loman is in a crisis. He's about to lose his job, he can't pay his bills, and his sons Biff and Happy don't respect him and can't seem to live up to their potential. He wonders what went wrong and how he can make things up to his family. Written by
The original Broadway production of "Death of a Salesman" by Arthur Miller opened at the Morosco Theater on February 10, 1949, ran for 742 performances and won the 1949 Tony Award (New York City) for the Best Play. "Death of a Salesman" won the Pulitzer Prize in Drama in 1949. See more »
When Willy is found in the bathroom by Stanley, he has a glass of scotch sitting on the toilet in one shot and not in any other one. See more »
[to his father]
Will you let me go, for Christ's sake? Will you take that phony dream and burn it before something happens?
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This TV adaptation of Arthur Miller's most successful play benefits from the serious playing of Dustin Hoffman in the lead as failing salesman Willy Loman. Miller's play takes the plight of the common man within the confines of the 'American dream' and then kicks him down.
Loman's sons are played by John Malkovich (Biff, memorable) and Stephen Lang (Happy, irritating); while his wife is played with tact and resignation by Kate Reid.
The stagey feel of this production comes across in every scene (the famous ones especially with Howard, Loman's boss; and Bernard, the successful son of Loman's colleague; and the final scenes with Linda) although they are handled very well. It would be a temptation to dismiss Willy Loman as loopy and in the throes of a breakdown and to ignore everything he says, but his words strike a chord and stay with you. 'Death of a Salesman' still has something to say to us, and a warning to give, even six decades after it was written.
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