8.1/10
5,119
13 user 18 critic

The Executioner (1963)

El verdugo (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, Comedy | 13 March 1964 (Italy)
An undertaker marries an old executioner's daughter and, although he doesn't like it, must continue the profession of his father-in-law after his retirement.

Director:

Luis García Berlanga (as Luis Gª. Berlanga)

Writers:

Luis García Berlanga (story) (as Luis Gª Berlanga), Rafael Azcona (story) | 3 more credits »
Reviews
4 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Placido (1961)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

In a small spanish town, a group of old ladies decide to celebrate Christmas Eve with a "Sit a poor man at your table" dinner: each wealthy household of the town will have a homeless person... See full summary »

Director: Luis García Berlanga
Stars: Cassen, José Luis López Vázquez, Elvira Quintillá
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

After finding out that North American people are visiting the Spanish villages, the citizens of Villar del Río start preparing themselves to welcome them when they arrive.

Director: Luis García Berlanga
Stars: Lolita Sevilla, Manolo Morán, José Isbert
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Jaume Canivell, Catalan manufacturer of mechanical porters , attends with her lover on a hunt to relate to important people. The farm where it is organized is full of strange characters.

Director: Luis García Berlanga
Stars: Rafael Alonso, Luis Escobar, Antonio Ferrandis
The Heifer (1985)
Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A platoon of mismatched republican soldiers cross the front-line to steal the bull that the enemy is going to fight on the saint patron date of the village. In addition to ruining the ... See full summary »

Director: Luis García Berlanga
Stars: Alfredo Landa, Guillermo Montesinos, Santiago Ramos
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Professor Jorge Serra Hamilton, an American scientist specialist in the atomic bomb, flees from their transcendental duties, in order to take shelter incognito and for a time in the idyllic... See full summary »

Director: Luis García Berlanga
Stars: Edmund Gwenn, Valentina Cortese, Juan Calvo
Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

In the village of Fuentecilla, there is a medicinal spa which was very popular in the past but that now has been forgotten by the public. In order to bring back the tourists, the "prominent... See full summary »

Director: Luis García Berlanga
Stars: Richard Basehart, José Isbert, Paolo Stoppa
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Second installment of the saga of the Leguineche's preceded by "The National Shotgun" and completed by "National III". After the death of Franco (1975) and the restoration of the monarchy, ... See full summary »

Director: Luis García Berlanga
Stars: Luis Ciges, Luis Escobar, Agustín González
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Spain, 1960s. People from a very poor family work in the country, at the service of a rich family of landowners...

Director: Mario Camus
Stars: Alfredo Landa, Terele Pávez, Belén Ballesteros
National III (1982)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

After being forced to sell his palace, the Marquis of Leguineche moved to an apartment with his son Luis José, his faithful servants and Father Calvo. When the father of Luis José dies, ... See full summary »

Director: Luis García Berlanga
Stars: Luis Ciges, Luis Escobar, Agustín González
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

After an accident Raymond has gone blind .His family treats him like a child .But fortunately ,a nun comes to his rescue.She works in a center where blind people learn to read with the Braille alphabet.

Director: Georges Lacombe
Stars: Jean Gabin, Simone Valère, Gérard Oury
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Paquita and her brother Venancio, both single and childish, live in a small town near Madrid. Their bossy eldest sister Ignacia, also an old maid, dominates them. One night, Paquita hears ... See full summary »

Director: Fernando Fernán Gómez
Stars: Carlos Larrañaga, Tota Alba, Lina Canalejas
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A Russian woman living in Memphis with a much older rock-'n'-roll legend experiences a personal awakening when her husband's estranged son comes to visit.

Director: Ira Sachs
Stars: Dina Korzun, Rip Torn, Darren E. Burrows
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Nino Manfredi ... José Luis Rodríguez, el enterrador
Emma Penella ... Carmen, la hija de Amadeo
José Isbert ... Amadeo, el verdugo (as Jose Isbert)
José Luis López Vázquez ... Antonio Rodríguez, el hermano mayor de José Luis (as Jose Luis Lopez Vazquez)
Ángel Álvarez ... Álvarez, el enterrador (as Angel Alvarez)
Guido Alberti Guido Alberti ... Director de la prisión
Julia Caba Alba ... Mujer visitante de la obra nº 2
María Luisa Ponte ... Estefanía, esposa de Antonio (as Maria Luisa Ponte)
María Isbert ... Ignacia, esposa de Álvarez (as Maria Isbert)
Erasmo Pascual ... San Martín
Xan das Bolas ... Guarda de la obra
José Orjas ... Marqués (as Jose Orjas)
José María Prada ... Vigilante con botella de champán (as Jose Maria Prada)
Félix Fernández ... Organista (as Felix Fernandez)
Antonio Ferrandis ... Funcionario de prisiones
Edit

Storyline

The history starts with the main character (an old executioner in the Spain of early 60's) approaching retirement age. As his profession is not exactly what you could call "popular", he (a very gentle and nice man, caring, and proud of traditions) begins to worry about who might take his place when he retires. He has a daughter, but, unfortunately, she seems doomed to perpetual "spinsterhood": as soon as any prospective groom learns about her dad and her dad's "trade", he runs away from her, scared. A sad life... However, a new character enters: the local undertaker, a handsome and young man who has exactly the same problem... No girl wants him given his profession. So, you have the woman whom almost nobody would marry and the man whom almost nobody would marry. Obviously, they are meant for each other. But here the old executioner has something to say: He does not object to her daughter marrying the young undertaker; he seems a decent man, and all that... But there is a condition: ... Written by Jose Beltran <pepe@prince.pe.u-tokyo.ac.jp>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Comedy

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

Spain | Italy

Language:

Spanish

Release Date:

13 March 1964 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

The Executioner See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Naga Films, Zebra Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Italian censorship visa # 42151 delivered on 24-1-1964. See more »

Quotes

José Luis Rodríguez, el enterrador: [subtitled version]
[Carmen goes to the funeral home to meet José Luis]
José Luis Rodríguez, el enterrador: Couldn't you wait at home? I'm working! I have to get this running.
Carmen, la hija de Amadeo: [she gives him a written paper] Here.
José Luis Rodríguez, el enterrador: Is it yes or no?
Carmen, la hija de Amadeo: Yes.
José Luis Rodríguez, el enterrador: "Positive reaction."
[a brass band that's been hired for the next funeral starts playing a funny tune]
José Luis Rodríguez, el enterrador: So it's for sure? Maybe they're wrong. Last year they said I had typhus when it was chicken pox.
Carmen, la hija de Amadeo: Don't worry. We'll do whatever you want.
[...]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in El rey del mambo (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

El verdugo
(twist)
Composed by Adolfo Waitzman
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Gallows Humour
20 February 2019 | by FiahmSee all my reviews

This is a real treat, a keenly observed, merry black comedy of life for a mild-mannered undertaker turned unwilling hangman. Every scene is filled with small observations and asides that add something memorable, and every bit character in every scene tosses in some little bit of "business" that is not necessary for the plot, but enriches it and deepens the believability of the world in which it is set.

Watching this made me think on how, if this film had been made at the same time outside of Europe, the British would have probably made it as a crass Carry On movie, and the Americans would most likely have turned it into a Jerry Lewis vehicle, without any subtlety, thoughtfulness, sensuality, societal commentary or beauty, and yet this is funnier than any of those put together, too.

The wedding scene is hilarious, with so much going on at every moment outside of the dialogue, and the "wave to daddy" line on the docks is priceless.

It's always a comedy, and yet one in which the viewer is never allowed to escape the oppressive moral weight of taking another's life, and the inability to look away from this increases as it goes along, until the ending borders on harrowing.

It's a film that really should be as well known as some of those by Fellini, and I'm eager now to see more by its mischevious writer and director, Luis Garcia Berlanga.


4 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 13 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series



Recently Viewed