6.9/10
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The Homecoming (1973)

PG | | Drama | 16 April 1977 (France)
In a dreary North London flat, the site of perpetual psychological warfare, a philosophy professor visits his family after a nine-year absence, and introduces the four men, father, uncle, and two brothers, to his wife.

Director:

Peter Hall

Writers:

Harold Pinter (play), Harold Pinter (screenplay)
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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Paul Rogers ... Max
Ian Holm ... Lenny
Cyril Cusack ... Sam
Terence Rigby ... Joey
Michael Jayston ... Teddy
Vivien Merchant ... Ruth
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Storyline

Max is a surly pensioner who alternately venerates and vilifies his dead wife. Sam, his brother, is a supercilious chauffeur. Lenny is a smiling, snake-like pimp. Joey is a thick-witted, would-be boxer. These four men live together in a North London flat, the site of their perpetual sadomasochistic battle of words and sometimes physical violence. And then after nine years, Max's third son, Teddy, a philosophy professor living in California, comes back home for a visit. He brings his wife, Ruth. She is immediately drawn in to the family's ugly psychological games and quickly proves a worthy opponent. Soon, the game involves both of Teddy's brothers taking extreme liberties with Ruth, as the coiled Teddy obstinately refuses to spoil the malicious fun by objecting. Written by J. Spurlin

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The share the house. They share the food. They share Teddy's wife. Such a nice happy family.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Vivien Merchant was nominated for the BAFTA Award for Best Supporting Actress in 1977 for this film despite the fact the film was first released in the U.S. in October of 1973 and was screened at the Cannes Film Festival in 1974. See more »

Quotes

Lenny: What did you say?
Max: I said shove off out of it, that's what I said.
Lenny: You'll go before me, Dad, if you talk to me in that tone of voice.
Max: Will I, you bitch?
Lenny: Oh, Daddy, you're not going to use your stick on me, are you? Eh? Don't use your stick on me, Daddy. No, please. It wasn't my fault, it was one of the others. I haven't done anything wrong, Dad, honest. Don't clout me with that stick, Dad.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jake's Progress (1995) See more »

User Reviews

 
Pinter at his best
3 June 2005 | by c_murphy86See all my reviews

The first thing that should be emphasised I think is if you you get the chance I strongly recommend you see the play at the theatre, somehow Pinter's famous pauses seem longer on the stage, and the claustrophobia of the piece is maintained far better than when you watch it on the screen. Nevertheless if you have seen the play (or even if you haven't) you really should watch this film version. Firstly it is directed by the fantastic Peter Hall, one of the great stage directors of the era (and still a great stage director) and thus he is able to remain true to the stage format of the play, while also maintaining a strong cinematic emphasis, this is not just a recording of a stage play. Secondly it features some truly fine actors including the fantastic Vivienne Merchant. Being Pinter's wife she seems to have a unique understanding of the words and is able to convey this onto the audience, her first conversation when she meets Lenny (Ian Holm) particularly sticks in the mind. Ian Holm and Paul Rogers are also fantastic along with the rest of the cast who have names as well known on the stage as they are on the screen. Overall I don't believe I've seen a finer adaptation of a play for the screen.


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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

16 April 1977 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Harold Pinter's The Homecoming See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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