6.0/10
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13 user 30 critic

Child's Play (1972)

At an exclusive boys' school, a new gym teacher is drawn into a feud between two older instructors, and he discovers that everything at the school is not quite as staid, tranquil and harmless as it seems.

Director:

Sidney Lumet

Writers:

Leon Prochnik (screenplay by), Robert Marasco (based on the Broadway play by)
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1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Mason ... Jerome Malley
Robert Preston ... Joseph Dobbs
Beau Bridges ... Paul Reis
Ron Weyand Ron Weyand ... Father Mozian (as Ronald Weyand)
Charles White ... Father Griffin
David Rounds David Rounds ... Father Penny
Kate Harrington Kate Harrington ... Mrs. Carter
Paul Alessi ... Student
Jamie Alexander Jamie Alexander ... Sheppard
Anthony Barletta Anthony Barletta ... Student
Brian Chapin Brian Chapin ... O'Donnell
Kevin Coupe Kevin Coupe ... Student
Bryant Fraser Bryant Fraser ... Jennings
Mark Hall Haefeli Mark Hall Haefeli ... Wilson
Christopher Hoag Christopher Hoag ... Student
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Storyline

Paul Reis returns to the exclusive Catholic prep school he graduated from nine years earlier as a gym teacher. He is reunited with his former mentor and English teacher, the affable and gregarious Joseph Dobbs, the most popular member of the faculty and advisor to the junior class, and Jerome Malley, a strict disciplinarian and teacher of classical languages, whose old-fashioned methods make him heartily disliked by his pupils. Reis finds himself caught in between the two men in a struggle for the hearts, minds, and souls of the boys. Malley, nicknamed "Lash" by his students has ruled out retirement, and Dobbs, who feels that Malley has lost touch with the students, hopes to inherit the senior class. Even though Malley's mother is dying an agonizing death from cancer, the Latin and Greek teacher refuses to surrender his position as head of the senior class to a man whose motives he questions. The tensions on the faculty are mirrored in the student body, which has endured a rash of ... Written by duke1029@aol.com

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

You only lose once.


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 June 1973 (Ireland) See more »

Also Known As:

Den dödliga leken See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Marasco based the play on his experiences as a Latin, Greek, and English teacher at his alma mater, Jesuit-run Regis High School in Manhattan, where a teacher did commit suicide by jumping out of a window after giving his students an assignment. See more »

Quotes

Jerome Malley: [to Dobbs in chapel] I wouldn't expect the truth from you, Dobbs, even in here.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in By Sidney Lumet (2015) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Good 70's mystery
1 June 2000 | by a.northSee all my reviews

Sidney Lumet manages to engender great tension in this curious tale about a group of satan like kids and one of their masters. Reasonable acting with an intelligent script produces satisfactory results.

The only thing missing here is a lack of focus on the mechanics of how the boys behaviour is merely down to a local cult or if something more sinister is at work; however it may have been the writers intention to leave us in two minds regarding this aspect.

Definitely worth watching


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