The Dresser


(out of 5)

Ronald Harwood adapts his hit Broadway play with mesmerizing results, despite making very few adjustments to the original stage setting. A heartily devoted dresser (Tom Courtenay) pushes, prods, cajoles, worships, degrades and inspires an aging, overworked actor (Albert Finney) to get on stage and get through a performance in the title role of King Lear, as the rest of the company looks on with fear that it won’t happen.  Eileen Atkins is devastating as the lonely stage manager who is all business at first but turns out to have a broken heart that emerges as the performance continues. Fantastic writing and direction create entertaining cinema out of a great backstage pass to the magical world of theatre.

, ,

United Kingdom, 1983

Directed by Peter Yates

Screenplay by

Cinematography by

Produced by Peter Yates

Music by

Production Design by

Costume Design by

Film Editing by

Film Festivals:  Berlin 1984

Cast Tags:   

Academy Award Nominations
Best Actor in a Leading Role (Tom Courtenay as “Norman”)
Best Actor in a Leading Role (Albert Finney as “Sir”)
Best Directing (Peter Yates)
Best Picture (Peter Yates, producer)
Best Writing (Screenplay Based on Material From Another Medium) (Ronald Harwood)

Golden Globe Award Nominations
Best Performance By An Actor in a Motion Picture-Drama (Tom Courtenay)
Best Performance By An Actor in a Motion Picture-Drama (Albert Finney)
Best Foreign Film (United Kingdom)
Best Director (Peter Yates)
Best Screenplay (Ronald Harwood)

National Board Of Review Award
Top Ten Films

Berlin Film Festival Award
Silver Berlin Bear-Best Actor (Albert Finney)

British Academy Award Nominations
Best Film
Best Actor (Tom Courtenay)
Best Actor (Albert Finney)
Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Eileen Atkins)
Best Direction (Peter Yates)
Best Screenplay – Adapted
Best Make Up Artist



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