72 user 22 critic

Man of La Mancha (1972)

The funny story of mad but kind and chivalrous elderly nobleman Don Quixote who, aided by his squire Sancho Panza, fights windmills that are seen as dragons to save prostitute Dulcinea who is seen as a noblewoman.


Arthur Hiller


Dale Wasserman (musical play), Dale Wasserman (screenplay)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Peter O'Toole ... Don Quixote De La Mancha / Miguel Cervantes / Alonso Quijana
Sophia Loren ... Dulcinea / Aldonza
James Coco ... Sancho Panza
Harry Andrews ... The Innkeeper / The Governor
John Castle ... Sanson Carrasco / The Duke
Brian Blessed ... Pedro
Ian Richardson ... The Padre
Julie Gregg ... Antonia
Rosalie Crutchley ... The Housekeeper
Gino Conforti ... The Barber
Marne Maitland ... Captain of the Guard
Dorothy Sinclair Dorothy Sinclair ... The Innkeeper's Wife
Miriam Acevedo Miriam Acevedo ... Fermina
Dominic Barto Dominic Barto ... Muleteer (as Dominic Bartó)
Poldo Bendandi Poldo Bendandi ... Muleteer


This musical version of Don Quixote is framed by an incident allegedly from the life of its author, Miguel de Cervantes. Don Quixote is the mad, aging nobleman who embarrasses his respectable family by his adventures. Backed by his faithful sidekick Sancho Panza, he duels windmills and defends his perfect lady Dulcinea (who is actually a downtrodden whore named Aldonza). Written by Reid Gagle

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Rarely does the motion picture bring to the screen all the warmth, adventure and great music you've been waiting for. See more »


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Peter O'Toole was not at all happy about the firing of his friend Peter Glenville as director, as he liked the helmer's idea of making the film a non-musical. O'Toole was deliberately difficult with Glenville's replacement, Arthur Hiller, referring to him as "Little Arthur" throughout production. See more »


At the start of the brawl with the Muleteers, Aldonza goes from standing right next to Pedro to far behind him and back throughout the scene. She also appears to be moving toward him in two separate shots. See more »


Aldonza: You know what the worst crime of all is? Being born. For that you get punished your whole life.
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the opening credits, we see the animated sails of a windmill, which, with each turn, begin to reveal, and finally become, a sketch of the face of Don Quixote. The camera moves in for an extreme closeup of the facial features, which, as the camera gets close, reveal themselves to be a giant prop in an outdoor stage presentation during a festival. As the opening credits end, the sketch of that prop dissolves into the real item. See more »

Alternate Versions

The DVD features the MGM logo in the credits, but not the United Artists one, although the film is a United Artists release. The VHS release featured both logos, and the original theatrical release only the United Artists one, along with the Transamerica logo (Transamerica once owned UA). See more »


Version of Don Quixote (1933) See more »


The Fight
Music adapted by Laurence Rosenthal from music composed by Mitch Leigh
Played by orchestra
See more »

User Reviews

POWERFUL Story ! 5 stars
7 June 2004 | by SanFranNiceRnSee all my reviews

This is one of my favorites movies, and although I am also a big fan of the play, this movie did no injustice to it whatsoever.. perhaps it would only make someone more motivated to see it performed LIVE on stage. Either way, it is very touching and something that imprints itself upon your heart.

I found similarities between this film and Life is Beautiful, not only the unconventional mentality of the leading characters, but the power we have to positively impact others. If you enjoy L.I.B., this is a MUST SEE !!

From the dismal dungeon jail to to the imaginative world of Don Quixote, Peter O'Toole is outstanding as the chivalrous errant knight. His performance is amazing. James Coco provides comic relief and Sophia Loren is moving as Dulcinea. The gentleness Don Quixote shows Dulcinea is beautiful.

This touching story within a story embraces and captives you as it takes you on a journey of valor, romance, suspense, deceit, comedy, and self examination. I would recommend experiencing at least once.

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Italy | USA



Release Date:

8 September 1973 (Italy) See more »

Also Known As:

Man of La Mancha See more »


Box Office


$12,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| 4-Track Stereo (35 mm prints)


Color (DeLuxe)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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