Customer Reviews


65 Reviews
5 star:
 (41)
4 star:
 (13)
3 star:
 (6)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:
 (5)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


73 of 78 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What?!...Ingrid Bergman, Walter Matthau, and Goldie Hawn?!
Being an avid movie and music fan, I'm always happy to find hidden gems in either artform that can take me by surprise. I will also say that on most occasions I usually tend to agree with the critics in their attitudes and assertions. However, this was not such a case. When I recently stumbled upon this movie, I had never heard of it; the cast immediately intrigued me,...
Published on January 28, 2004 by Anthony Paul

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's a below average romp that gets a major facelift due to some remarkable performances...
I looked up this 69 comedy mainly because I wanted to see Goldie Hawn's Oscar winning turn. I'm a fan of the actress and so I thought it might be fun to see where she got her start (not only did she win the Oscar for this, but it was her first film). Add to the heap that this also stars Walter Matthau (my wife and I are pretty big fans, especially of his work alongside...
Published on October 23, 2009 by Andrew Ellington


‹ Previous | 1 27 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

73 of 78 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What?!...Ingrid Bergman, Walter Matthau, and Goldie Hawn?!, January 28, 2004
This review is from: Cactus Flower (DVD)
Being an avid movie and music fan, I'm always happy to find hidden gems in either artform that can take me by surprise. I will also say that on most occasions I usually tend to agree with the critics in their attitudes and assertions. However, this was not such a case. When I recently stumbled upon this movie, I had never heard of it; the cast immediately intrigued me, especially Ingrid Bergman (in a 60's comedy?!) I did a little research and was dissappointed to see that most of the reviews of this film were either lukewarm or negative, with most of the complaints being made about the "miscasting of Ingrid Bergman". Interesting enough, Goldie Hawn managed to win an Academy Award for her role...(was 1969 that bad a year for actresses?).
Anyway, I wasn't expecting much when I finally watched it, especially after reading Leonard Maltin's review. However, I quickly found myself thouroughly enjoying the scenarios unfolding. Lighthearted, yes...but very fun. It is very much in line with the Neil Simon plays/film of the era, having also been derived from a Broadway play. I have to say that good old Leonard is wrong on this one, as are many other critcs. The most astonishing error is the claim that Ingrid Bergman was miscast and has no comedic timing. She was a riot to watch in a role like this; I'll say the best moments in the film are hers. To my eyes, Bergman appears to be having a blast with this role and it is quite apparent. At this point in her career, her mid 50's, it is wholly enjoyable to see the still beautiful Bergman having some lighthearted, carefree fun.
I am surprised that the Academy chose to honor Goldie Hawn for her performance. I found her to be a tad too cooky, even for a '60's go-go girl. Walter Matthau, however, plays the role of a sneaky dentist quite well and is fully enjoyable.
Apart from the actors' performances, I did also enjoy the look and feel of the film. While many films from the 60's and 70's appear, to me, to be hopelessly dated in both of these aspects, I found that the "1969" in this film looked great. It was actually very appealing...oranges,browns, flowers, and miniskirts, et.al.
All in all, a very satisfying, simple little romp. Look folks, I'm not saying this is a masterpiece by any stretch, but I definately found this worthy seeing. The DVD has no extras to speak of...just a trailer of the film, as well as trailers for two other completely unrelated film (?) However, the transfer of the film to DVD is surprisingly satisfying...colors are rich and vibrant, with minimal artifacts, film dirt/damage. Also, and thankfully, the Widescreen is anamorphic. Of course, there is the obligatory inclusion of the Standard (aka butchered)Version on the flipside of the disk, for those who haven't made the transition to the CORRECT way that is widescreen. (ok...so maybe that was a little unnecessary)
So if you've possibly not seen or heard of this film and are interested, don't listen to the critics on this one. Give it a try, it's a good time.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Leanord Maltin is Wrong, January 2, 2002
By 
James P. Hunt (Oklahoma City, OK USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Cactus Flower [VHS] (VHS Tape)
This comedy is not thin. It has absolutely no sag, a good and actually believable storyline, likable and believable characters, great acting, and it's very funny. This is what they mean when they say they don't make comedies like this anymore. Written at a time when Hollywood did not presume that the audience only needed a display of bodily fluids and lame story lines to be satisfied.
The film demonstrates another point: the great comedic actors don't try to be funny. They just act. I don't know if Walter Mathau ever won an Oscar, but if he didn't he would be, like Cary Grant, one of the greatest actors never to have done so. He was not only a great comedy actor ("Cactus Flower", "Odd Couple" and "A New Leaf"), but could quite convincingly play a thug ("Strangers When We Meet") and a tough, no-nonsense cop ("The Laughing Policeman").
In this film, he's brilliant as always. With all respect to the new 20 million dollar a film generation, could Adam Sandler play the role of Julian Winston without simply playing, oh, Adam Sandler?
Ingrid Bergman is incredible. And by that, I mean incredibly sexy. You have no difficulty whatsoever seeing why Walter Mathau eventually picks her over a 21 year old Goldie Hawn. And you fully understand why the much younger man nuzzles her neck while dancing with her. While watching the film, I kept reminding myself that it had been made 25 years after "Casablanca" and yet there she was, still looking smashing.
So yeah, it's "dated". Were that more contemporary Hollywood comedies, maybe even one, were so dated.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you like good ol' Classic films, you'll love this one, February 6, 2006
By 
Laura Roop (Newburgh, IN USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Cactus Flower (DVD)
Classic Walter Matthau film. I enjoyed it very much because of the easy & believeable relationship between Matthau & Hawn, the suppressed attraction between Bergman & Matthau & the sweet storyline. This film was made during a time where special effects didn't fill in for weak plots; instead the story actually makes its point. Well done.

As bachelor dentist Dr. Julian Winston, Matthau tries to convince his mistress, Toni, (Goldie Hawn) that he has a wife who won't divorce him because they have children. Toni's had enough: she fires off a letter (yes, actually walks across the street in her nightgown to deposit the letter in a mailbox)to Julian, telling him she's committed suicide. Her young writer-neighbor, Igor (Rick Lenz), smells gas in the apartment hallway, breaks in & saves Toni.

When Julian receives the letter at his office, he storms off to Toni's apartment, only to find her alive & in the company of Igor. This little stunt persuades Julian to ask Toni to marry him -- he'll get a divorce no matter what. The catch is now Toni wants to meet Julian's wife, she has to get to know her so that Julian's wife won't think of Toni as a home-wrecker. Enter Ingrid Bergman as Miss Stephanie Dickinson, Dr. Winston's long-suffering, never-married dental assistant. Julian convinces Stephanie to pose as his wife for Toni.

What ensues is a calamity of coincidences & misunderstandings that cause true feelings to be revealed. Ingrid Bergman is such a joy to watch, she effortlessly steals the show.

If you want light-hearted entertainment that will leave you with a smile on your face, this film is for you.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very, very good comedy, December 14, 2003
By A Customer
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Cactus Flower (DVD)
As other reviewers have said, Leonard Maltin is absolutely wrong about this film. The comedy is very tight and well timed. The dialogue is the wittiest of any movie I've seen from the era. It does tend a little toward one-liners, but it doesn't matter because it's fall-out-of-your-seat funny. Ingrid Bergman is divine in a role you would never have expected for her. The signs of the times are ubiquitous -- references to "the Pill," "hippies," "squares," etc., but the comedy is far from dated. The best aspect of the film is its unconventional plot. Romantic comedies are highly predictable as a class -- this one keeps you guessing. Puts even Neil Simon to shame. Highest recommendation.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All these later, still laughing..., June 28, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Cactus Flower [VHS] (VHS Tape)
I am not easily impressed with comedies; they have to be really good to catch my interest. There are only half a dozen I have considered classics, and this is one of them. The cast was perfectly chosen for their parts, the story was hilarious, the confirmed bachelor a quite common figure in the singles world I occupied when this movie came out, and the movement good.
So imagine my delight to learn that amazon.com has old movies available for sale, new and used, and that I have been able to begin buying many. The "Pink Panther" series, the first "Raiders of the Lost Ark" (wasn't as wild about the two following), "Tootsie," and Cactus "Flower" are on my list of best comedies.
P.S. Only one reviewer above didn't understand the plot or the choice of Ingrid Bergman. He might wish to view it again to "get it."
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Adroit Matthau, a Fresh Goldie and a Fun-Loving Bergman Provide Lift to a Frothy Farce, February 2, 2006
This review is from: Cactus Flower (DVD)
Aside from the discotheque scenes that epitomize the swinging sixties (especially with everyone dancing to instrumental versions of Monkees hits), I am surprised how well this lightweight farce holds up 37 years later, but indeed it does thanks to the breezy execution of its deception-based plot and the sharp interplay of the three leads. Directed by the redoubtable stage-to-screen expert Gene Saks, this 1969 comedy is about Julian Winston, a successful Manhattan dentist and confirmed bachelor, who pretends to be married in order to avoid long-term commitment with his young girlfriend of a year, Toni. In response to Toni's half-hearted suicide attempt, Julian agrees to marry her, but Toni first insists on meeting his wife to alleviate her conscience. Enter Julian's devoted nurse Stephanie to play the wife, and the inevitable complications ensue with white lies growing into major whoppers that lead to presumed couplings and de-couplings.

As Julian, a relaxed Walter Matthau dexterously plays the deceptive dentist in his typically sardonic manner, but he lets his two female co-stars walk off with the picture. In her big screen debut, a pixyish 24-year old Goldie Hawn is still retaining her giggly "Laugh-In" persona but provides unexpected savvy and depth as Toni. She and Matthau have great, unforced chemistry in their scenes together. Screen legend Ingrid Bergman, still serenely regal at 54, is obviously having a ball playing Stephanie, initially starchy and quick-witted but blossoming into a liberated spirit as the story evolves. I particularly like how casual she appears after her overnight romp. There is nice supporting work from Rick Lenz as Toni's bohemian neighbor Igor and Jack Weston as Julian's smarmy actor buddy Harvey. Billy Wilder's longtime collaborator, I.A.L. Diamond, provides the sparkling screenplay and opens up the story beyond its stage-bound origins for Saks, who is not the most cinematic of directors. Other than a couple of trailers, there are no significant extras with the DVD.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "One of the best comedies I ever saw." "My favorite", October 27, 1999
By 
This review is from: Cactus Flower [VHS] (VHS Tape)
When I first saw Cactus Flower I was 13 and because of this movie I became a devoted fan of Ingrid Bergman. Now I'm 35 and still enjoy the film every time I see it. Ingrid was wonderful as the proper Sthepanie Dicksinson, (Dr Winton's secretary) and the same goes to Goldie Hawn as Toni Simmons, his young and ingenuous girlfriend. Watch for the discotheque scenes...you will laugh and laugh.....
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful comedy with excellent cast!, January 15, 2001
By A Customer
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Cactus Flower [VHS] (VHS Tape)
This classic comedy of mix-ups and mistakes is sure to please. Walter Matthau is the "dirty married bachelor", dentist Julian who lies to his girlfriend, Toni (Goldie Hawn)by pretending that he is married. When he discovers that she tried to kill himself for him, he invents a little more so that he can get a "divorce" from his "wife" and marry Toni. But since Toni won't be a "house-wrecker", he also has to come up with a wife! Ingrid Bergman as Julian's stiff Swedish nurse is excellent as she comes to his aid. As can be expected, the situation gets stickier and stickier as the movie gets funnier! Anyone who enjoys mix-up situation comedies will love this movie. Other suggestions are "Housesitter" (Steve Martin and Goldie Hawn) and "9 to 5" (Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, and Dolly Parton). Happy watching!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cactus Flower has laughing power, August 4, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Cactus Flower [VHS] (VHS Tape)
The 1969 movie version of Abe Burrows' hit Broadway play "Cactus Flower" although a bit dated still has the ability to make me laugh. The stand out here is an impressive movie debut by Goldie Hawn (in the role of Toni - originated by Brenda Vaccaro on stage). Her cupie doll looks and sing songy voice give her character just the right naivete needed to pull off this role. Ingrid Bergman as Nurse Stephanie (played on stage by Lauren Bacall) is hilarious in a bit where she mocks the latest dance of the period by creating a new dance called..The Dentist! Walter Matthau holds his own as the philandering dentist who leads Toni into believing he's a married man with kids in order to avoid a more "serious" relationship with her. All-in-all a worthy movie version of a great but long-forgotten play.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lots of laughs!, February 2, 2004
By 
This review is from: Cactus Flower (DVD)
Will established dentist Julian Winston (Walter Mathau) end up with Toni (Goldie Hawn), his young and goofy mistress or his assistant and fake 'wife' Stephanie (Ingrid Bergman), solid, smart and secretly in love with her boss?
This is one of my family's most beloved movies. Clever and funny, with a cast that shines in every scene. I agree with other reviewers that Ingrid Bergman's comedic timing is superb! And Goldie Hawn is so very young in it, and already a high-class performance that won her an award.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 27 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

Cactus Flower
Cactus Flower by Gene Saks (DVD - 2002)
$64.99
In Stock
Add to cart Add to wishlist
Search these reviews only
Rate and Discover Movies
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.