Blog Directory CineVerse: Hello darkness, my old friend...

Hello darkness, my old friend...

Tuesday, November 7, 2023

Whether you regard it as a timeless classic or a fascinating but dated relic of its era, The Graduate continues to intrigue as a unique cinematic work that reflects the boomer generation it targeted as well as the talented collaborators involved, including director Mike Nichols. Adapted from Charles Webb's 1963 novel of the same name by screenwriters Calder Willingham and Buck Henry, the movie features Dustin Hoffman in the role of Benjamin Braddock, a recent college graduate grappling with uncertainty about his future and embarking on a complex affair with an older woman, Mrs. Robinson, portrayed by Anne Bancroft. The film delves into themes of alienation, intergenerational strife, and the quest for purpose in a post-graduate world.

The Graduate serves as a mirror to the evolving societal norms and values of the 1960s, vividly depicting the generation gap between younger and older characters while challenging the conformity and materialism prevalent in the older generation. Notably, the film's soundtrack, featuring music by Simon & Garfunkel, gained immense popularity and is closely associated with the movie. Songs such as "Mrs. Robinson" and "The Sound of Silence" became chart-toppers and are inseparable from the film's thematic essence. The Graduate's impressive cinematography, narrative techniques, and use of symbolism have left an enduring influence on the craft of filmmaking, and the work garnered numerous Academy Award nominations, including a nod for Best Picture, with Mike Nichols securing the Oscar for Best Director. 

Our CineVerse group revisited this picture last week and engaged in a healthy discourse about its many merits. To listen to a recording of that group discussion, click here.

To read a past CineVerse post about The Graduate, click here.

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