6.5/10
5,596
34 user 50 critic

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)
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

1 win. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

The Decameron (1971)
Comedy | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

An adaptation of nine stories from Boccaccio's "Decameron".

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Franco Citti, Ninetto Davoli, Jovan Jovanovic
Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Ancient Arabia. A youth is chosen by a beautiful slave girl to be her new master; she is kidnapped and they must search for each other. Stories are told within stories; love, travel and the whims of destiny.

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Ninetto Davoli, Franco Citti, Franco Merli
Medea (1969)
Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

After his quest to retrieve the fabled Golden Fleece, Jason returns to Greece with the powerful sorceress, Medea. However, when the king banishes her, it's only human that Medea plots her furious revenge. Can they escape her wrath?

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Maria Callas, Massimo Girotti, Laurent Terzieff
Porcile (1969)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Two dramatic stories. In an undetermined past, a young cannibal (who killed his own father) is condemned to be torn to pieces by some wild beasts. In the second story, Julian, the young son... See full summary »

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Pierre Clémenti, Jean-Pierre Léaud, Alberto Lionello
Oedipus Rex (1967)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In pre-war Italy, a young couple have a baby boy. The father, however, is jealous of his son - and the scene moves to antiquity, where the baby is taken into the desert to be killed. He is ... See full summary »

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Franco Citti, Silvana Mangano, Alida Valli
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

The life of Jesus Christ according to the Gospel of Matthew. Pasolini shows Christ as a Marxist avant-la-lettre and therefore uses half of the text of Matthew.

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Enrique Irazoqui, Margherita Caruso, Susanna Pasolini
Teorema (1968)
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A mysterious young man seduces each member of a bourgeois family. When he suddenly leaves, how will their lives change?

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Silvana Mangano, Terence Stamp, Massimo Girotti
Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Innocenti Totò and his son Innocenti Ninetto are drifting on a road in Italy, when they meet a Marxist speaking crow. The trio travels together in a long journey as their hunger increases.

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Totò, Ninetto Davoli, Femi Benussi
Mamma Roma (1962)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Having renounced her ignominious past, a former streetwalker reunites with her son. However, an extortion scheme endangers her aspirations for a decent bourgeois life. Can she protect him from the same snares that wounded her youth?

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Anna Magnani, Ettore Garofolo, Franco Citti
Drama | Horror | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

In World War II Italy, four fascist libertines round up nine adolescent boys and girls and subject them to one hundred and twenty days of physical, mental and sexual torture.

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Paolo Bonacelli, Laura Betti, Giorgio Cataldi
Accattone (1961)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A pimp with no other means to provide for himself finds his life spiraling out of control when his prostitute is sent to prison.

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Franco Citti, Franca Pasut, Silvana Corsini
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Documentary footage of the city of Sana'a in Yemen, one of the oldest continually inhabited cities in the world, with a voice-over calling for UNESCO to protect the city's architectural heritage before it is destroyed by development.

Director: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Stars: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Edit

Cast

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

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 »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Remarkably, this is the only major cinematic take on Geoffrey Chaucer's classic tales. See more »

Goofs

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

Quotes

The Cook: Between a jest and a joke, many a truth can be told.
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

Referenced in Troll (1986) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Superb Film
22 October 2007 | by networkenglishSee all my reviews

I'm rather bemused by some of the negative comments above. This film - in my humble opinion - is one of the greatest ever made, and my personal favourite of all P.P. Pasolini's. Pasolini brings life to Chaucer in a way my poor teachers at school could never have dared. In the film, Pasolini casts himself as Chaucer; daydreaming, laughing at his own tales, being berated by his wife. And therein lies the clue to this film. It's not just an interpretation of the Canterbury Tales, it's a portrayal of its author. For all claims of "smut" (see above), I can honestly say that your imagination must be pretty dull not to laugh at certain earthy, dream-like scenes. Absolutely non of the scenes in this movie can be branded as bad-taste. They're absolutely accurate. Pasolini showed deep understanding of the English psyche throughout; the examples are too numerous to mention. If you're looking for an explanation of The Canterbury Tales, you won't find it in this film. But if you're looking for how to go about interpreting it for yourself, you'll find no better. This movie is one that I will keep, and you can bet my kids are going to see it when they get a little older too.


10 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 34 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed