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Husbands (1970)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama | 8 December 1970 (USA)
After the death of a common friend, three married men leave their lives together, seeking pleasure and freedom and ultimately leaving for London.

Director:

John Cassavetes

Writer:

John Cassavetes
Reviews

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ben Gazzara ... Harry
Peter Falk ... Archie Black
John Cassavetes ... Gus Demetri
Jenny Runacre ... Mary Tynan
Jenny Lee Wright Jenny Lee Wright ... Pearl Billingham
Noelle Kao Noelle Kao ... Julie
John Kullers John Kullers ... Red
Meta Shaw Stevens Meta Shaw Stevens ... Annie (as Meta Shaw)
Leola Harlow Leola Harlow ... Leola
Delores Delmar Delores Delmar ... The Countess
Eleanor Zee Eleanor Zee ... Mrs. Hines
Claire Malis Claire Malis ... Stuart's Wife
Peggy Lashbrook Peggy Lashbrook ... Diana Mallabee
Eleanor Cody Gould Eleanor Cody Gould ... 'Normandy' Singer
Sarah Felcher Sarah Felcher ... Sarah
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Storyline

A common friend's sudden death brings three men, married with children, to reconsider their lives and ultimately leave together. But mindless enthusiasm for regained freedom will be short-lived. Written by Fabrizio Sabidussi

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A comedy about life, death and freedom

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic elements including sexual situations, language, drunkenness, and brief domestic violence | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French | Italian | Cantonese

Release Date:

8 December 1970 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Husbands: A Comedy About Life, Death and Freedom See more »

Filming Locations:

London, England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Faces Music See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(original) | (TV) | | (dubbed)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Screenwriter John Cassavetes wrote the film's dialogue after doing improvisations with actors Ben Gazzara and Peter Falk. Reportedly, Cassavetes built the film's three main central characterizations around the real-life personalities of the film's three main actors one of whom included himself. See more »

Quotes

Archie Black: [Arriving at the funeral] I suppose this is proper, all these big cars and chauffeurs. Black shiny cars. Seems dopey for a guy like that. Well, I guess that's what they do. People get symbolic over death. They get very formal, and it's really ridiculous. Because it's probably the most humiliating thing in the world. But I feel very relaxed. People die of tensions. That's all they die of, Gus. That's the truth. Did you know that? I know it, and it's something I'm never gonna forget.
Gus Demetri: Don't believe...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

There are no closing credits and no "THE END" title card. The screen just goes black. In the opening credits, everyone involved in the film (even the "little people") are credited on two "tell all" title cards, right on down from the actors to the grips, a total of 82 credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

The original theatrical release ran 154 minutes. The out-of-print VHS release from Columbia/Tristar runs 132 minutes. See more »

Connections

Referenced in A Decade Under the Influence (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

When Irish Eyes Are Smiling
(1912) (uncredited)
Music by Ernest Ball
Lyrics by Chauncey Olcott and George Graff
Sung a cappella by "Charlie" (probably Charles Gaines)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Jazz" acting
20 March 1999 | by SardonySee all my reviews

A Cassavetes film is like good jazz music: both are largely improvisational with the actor/musicians playing off each other. With Cassavetes, a basic written theme is provided and the actors embellish upon it; rhythms, tempos and emotional counterpoint are deftly manipulated. In HUSBANDS, Cassavetes is the bandleader, and Peter Falk and Ben Gazzara prove themselves to be two of the best "jazz actors" ever. HUSBANDS is "a guy film." Women have their "girl films," but here's one for we men (and for women who want to understand men). Cassavetes, Falk and Gazzara play three best friends who have just lost their fourth to a sudden death. The surviving three, all 40-something, run away from their marriages, jobs and other shackles for a few days in search of themselves, meaning, purpose. Along the way, we are intimately exposed to their fears, dreams, passions, disgusts, and their love for each other (expertly depicted male bonding: guys who understand each others' emotions, with masculinity remaining intact). Perhaps no other filmmaker/actor combo than Cassavetes and his "company" of actors have ever succeeded as well at depicting so uncompromisingly life's emotional truth. Mind you, Cassavetes' style and camera paints in broad loose strokes, so be forewarned if you dislike a hand-held shaky camera and sometimes out-of-focus shots as the camera operator tries to follow the improvising actor. But HUSBANDS has far less of this than, say, Cassavetes' FACES. And this is not all a downer film; there's much humor, too, in its sometimes bittersweet mood (for example, the Countess scene: "take your hand off my hand") All in all, and though a little long, a great film; well worth the time.


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