7.2/10
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16 user 9 critic

The Guest (1963)

The Caretaker (original title)
| Drama | July 1963 (UK)
While renovating his house in London, Aston, out of pity, lodges a homeless man, but Aston's brother taunts and harasses the cranky old bum.

Director:

Clive Donner

Writer:

Harold Pinter (play)
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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Alan Bates ... Mick
Donald Pleasence ... Mac Davies / Bernard Jenkins
Robert Shaw ... Aston
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Storyline

Aston (Robert Shaw), a quiet, reserved man, lives alone in a top-floor cluttered room of a small abandoned house in a poor London district. He befriends and takes in Mac Davies (Donald Pleasence), an old derelict who has been fired from a menial job in a café. In time, Aston offers him a job as caretaker of the house. Aston's brother, Mick (Sir Alan Bates), a taunting sadist, harasses the derelict when his brother is away, countermanding his orders. Eventually, Aston, irritated by the cantankerous old man, puts him out. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Based on the play 'The Caretaker'.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

July 1963 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

The Guest See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

£30,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Caretaker Films See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The scene when Davies is wondering along the busy main road and Mick gives him a brief lift in his van, originally wasn't part of the play. See more »

Quotes

Mick: I could turn this place into a penthouse. For instance this room. This room could have been the kitchen. Right size, nice window, sun comes in. I'd have I'd have teal-blue, copper and parchment linoleum squares. I'd have those colours re-echoed in the walls. I'd offset the kitchen units with charcoal-grey worktops. Plenty of room for cupboards for the crockery. We'd have a small wall cupboard, a large wall cupboard, a corner wall cupboard with revolving shelves. You shouldn't be short of ...
See more »

Connections

Version of De huisbewaarder (1984) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A cast of three play two crazed brothers and a rather simple but aggressive 'gentleman of the road'.
19 April 2019 | by christopher-underwoodSee all my reviews

Very impressive adaptation of the Harold Pinter play for the screen. Only opened up a couple of times but both turn out to be short but crucial scenes that say all the more for being set outside. The main 'set', however, is the amazingly crushed and crowded room with all its junk, or what could be considered items that might be useful in the future. A cast of three play two crazed brothers and a rather simple but aggressive 'gentleman of the road'. Pleasence plays the tramp and it is a stunning performance, at once cringing and self effacing, yet also wildly defensive and nasty. I had always wondered where the actor had managed to draw his character in Cul de Sac from, this Pinter portrayal would seem to be the answer. Robert Shaw plays the quieter of the two brothers and Alan Bates the more clearly schizoid with wild swings between what might be caring or killing. The succinct and portentous dialogue has echoes of Beckett yet even the darkest and pessimistic of the Irishman's writings resonate with a sense of kindliness towards the desperate characters, not here. However enjoyable it is to watch these three struggle for supremacy in such a forsaken situation, it is without doubt a very jaundiced view of the human psyche on display.


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