7.3/10
10,338
55 user 11 critic

Death of a Salesman (1985)

An aging traveling salesman recognizes the emptiness of his life and tries to fix it.

Director:

Volker Schlöndorff (as Volker Schlondorff)

Writers:

Arthur Miller (teleplay), Arthur Miller (play)
Reviews
Popularity
4,790 ( 204)
Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 6 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Dustin Hoffman ... William 'Willy' Loman
Kate Reid ... Linda Loman
John Malkovich ... Biff Loman
Stephen Lang ... Harold 'Happy' Loman
Charles Durning ... Charley
Louis Zorich ... Ben Loman
David Chandler David Chandler ... Bernard (as David S. Chandler)
Jon Polito ... Howard Wagner
Kathryn Rossetter ... Woman from Boston (as Kathy Rossetter)
Tom Signorelli ... Stanley
Linda Kozlowski ... Miss Forsythe
Karen Needle Karen Needle ... Letta
Anne McIntosh Anne McIntosh ... Jenny
Michael Quinlan Michael Quinlan ... Waiter
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Storyline

Salesman Willy Loman is in a crisis. He's about to lose his job, he can't pay his bills, and his sons Biff and Happy don't respect him and can't seem to live up to their potential. He wonders what went wrong and how he can make things up to his family. Written by Eric Sorensen

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Its passion cannot be overstated. Its power must not be overlooked.

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It took three and a half hours for make-up artists to transform Dustin Hoffman, then in his forties, into Willy, who is described in the stage directions as "over sixty". See more »

Goofs

When Biff and Linda argue in the kitchen, Linda grabs an empty glass and places it under the tap, when she turns the tap on no water comes out but when she picks the glass up, it is full of water. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Linda Loman: Willy?
Willy Loman: It's alright. I came back.
Linda Loman: Why, what happened? Did something happen Willy?
Willy Loman: Nah.
Linda Loman: You didn't smash the car did you?
Willy Loman: I said nothing happened! Didn't you hear me?
Linda Loman: Didn't you feel well?
Willy Loman: [sighs] I'm tired to the death. I-a, I couldn't make it. I just couldn't make it Linda.
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Connections

Referenced in Forensic Files: Death by a Salesman (2004) See more »

User Reviews

Hoffman as Loman does it again
5 December 2004 | by didi-5See all my reviews

This TV adaptation of Arthur Miller's most successful play benefits from the serious playing of Dustin Hoffman in the lead as failing salesman Willy Loman. Miller's play takes the plight of the common man within the confines of the 'American dream' and then kicks him down.

Loman's sons are played by John Malkovich (Biff, memorable) and Stephen Lang (Happy, irritating); while his wife is played with tact and resignation by Kate Reid.

The stagey feel of this production comes across in every scene (the famous ones especially with Howard, Loman's boss; and Bernard, the successful son of Loman's colleague; and the final scenes with Linda) although they are handled very well. It would be a temptation to dismiss Willy Loman as loopy and in the throes of a breakdown and to ignore everything he says, but his words strike a chord and stay with you. 'Death of a Salesman' still has something to say to us, and a warning to give, even six decades after it was written.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 September 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Death of a Salesman See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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