6.5/10
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The Canterbury Tales (1972)

I racconti di Canterbury (original title)
NC-17 | | Comedy, Drama, History | 30 May 1980 (USA)
Pasolini's artistic, sometimes violent, always vividly cinematic retelling of some of Chaucer's most erotic tales.

Writers:

Pier Paolo Pasolini (screenplay), Geoffrey Chaucer (book) (as G. Chaucer)
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More Like This 

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Hugh Griffith ... Sir January
Laura Betti ... The Wife from Bath
Ninetto Davoli ... Perkin
Franco Citti ... The Devil
Josephine Chaplin ... May
Alan Webb Alan Webb ... Old Man
Pier Paolo Pasolini ... Geoffrey Chaucer
J.P. Van Dyne J.P. Van Dyne ... The Cook
Vernon Dobtcheff ... The Franklin
Adrian Street Adrian Street ... Fighter
Orla Pederson ... Pilgrim (as OT)
Derek Deadman Derek Deadman ... The Pardoner (as Derek Deadmin)
Nicholas Smith ... Friar
George Bethell Datch George Bethell Datch ... Host of the Tabard (as George B. Datch)
Dan Thomas ... Nicholas
Edit

Storyline

Pasolini's artistic, sometimes violent, always vividly cinematic retelling of some of Chaucer's most erotic tales.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | History

Certificate:

NC-17 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Italy | France

Language:

Italian | English

Release Date:

30 May 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Canterbury Tales See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (premiere)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The line spoken by the angel in the last segment, "Vuolsi così colà dove si puote ciò che si vuole e più non dimandare" ("'It's will'd, where will and power are one. Ask thou no more"), is a quotation from Dante Alighieri's Inferno. See more »

Goofs

Some of the women have tan-lines from bikinis. See more »

Quotes

Perkin's mother: [singing] Oh, there was a little beggar man that goes from town to town, and wherever he get a job and work he's willing to sit down.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The original UK cinema version was cut by the BBFC with edits to anal sex shots, a man being whipped, and Rufus urinating on the crowd during the 'Pardoner's Tale' segment for an 'X' certificate. The cuts were fully restored in 2001 and the certificate downgraded to a '15'. See more »

Connections

References The Circus (1928) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Offensive, but with style
5 July 2001 | by Johnny BSee all my reviews

Having seen all of Pasolini's medieval trilogy inspired from international literature classics, I cannot but admit that this is his least inspired contribution. I don't know exactly what's wrong with the film - maybe it's the majority of the acting, or else it's the script. Naturally, having read the book beforehand helps to tell which tale is being shown, but assuming that the majority of the viewers have not read Chaucer's masterpiece, I doubt how many managed to guess what the tales are about. Still the movie has Pasolini written all over it: shockingly explicit scenes, watersports, unisex nudity galore (even senseless), sickening graphics of people vomiting and devils shitting monks, sex all over the place etc... Only for Pasolini admirers or for people who like an "uncut" interpretation of ambiguous medieval classics.


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