This is Benjamin. Hes a little worried about his future.
Running Time: 105 minutes
US Certificate: PG UK Certificate: 15
Country: United States
When still blinking, inexperienced, wet-behind-the-ears, virginal however you might choose to describe it what young man doesnt quite fancy the idea of having a willing older woman arrive on the scene to show him the ropes? Certainly Benjamin Braddock (Dustin Hoffman) is up for it! After all, hes a 20-year-old who voluntarily chooses to wear a jacket and tie everywhere he goes, and hes also a jumpy, snivelling bag of nerves so, when his parents pal Mrs Robinson (Anne Bancroft) starts to show a bit of an interest, hes got to think that all of his Christmases have come at once. I mean, lets face it: the hotties arent exactly queuing up.
Still, youve got to hand it to our Benjie: he must have something going for him because, by the time this enjoyable Oscar-scooping classic has hurtled to its famous conclusion, hes also managed to get his hands on a younger member of the Robinson family in the shape of daughter Elaine (Katharine Ross). How does he do it, eh?
More than 30 years after its original release, The Graduate remains a firm favourite among movie lovers everywhere. Though it goes a little flat in the middle and attempts a little bizarrely to make a hero figure out of a character whos actually a bit of an arse, a memorably stern performance from Bancroft and hilarious comic reactions from Hoffman ensure this one will always maintain its popularity.
The film also remains surprisingly undated, predominantly, I suppose, because of Benjamins complete and utter oblivion to 60s society (dodgy haircut aside, he fits none of the drug-addled flower-loving free-shagging stereotypes weve come to associate with the teens and twenty-somethings of the era). Of course, having said all of that, there IS always the soundtrack, an inescapably nauseating Simon and Garfunkel celebration of all that is forever twee. Still, the music goes fantastically well with Benjamins dress-sense.
It's Got: Benjamins dad is K.I.T.T. from Knight Rider (William Daniels), and the mayor from Jaws (Murray Hamilton).
It Needs: To make sure as few of us as possible know that theres actually an age gap of only six years between Hoffman and Bancroft. It kinda spoils the magic a little bit, doesnt it?
DVD Extras A trailer, a 20-minute featurette on The Graduate at 25, a stills gallery, and an interesting little 5-minute interview in which Hoffers lets us in on his idea for a sequel (Id personally like it to be titled The Post-Graduate arf!). Version reviewed: The Graduate (Momentum Pictures Home Ent) DVD Extras Rating: 6/10
Put this much-loved silly 60s coming-of-ager into your DVD player and let it seduce you.