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The Night of the Iguana

162 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Night of the Iguana (DVD)

A defrocked Episcopal clergyman leads a bus-load of middle-aged Baptist women on a tour of the Mexican coast and comes to terms with the failure haunting his life.

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Special Features

  • New featurette The Night of the Iguana: Houston's Gamble
  • Vintage featurette On the Trail of the Iguana
  • Theatrical trailers

Product Details

  • Actors: Richard Burton, Ava Gardner, Deborah Kerr, Sue Lyon, Skip Ward
  • Directors: John Huston
  • Writers: John Huston, Anthony Veiller
  • Producers: John Huston, Ray Stark
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Black & White, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono), French (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: May 2, 2006
  • Run Time: 118 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (162 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000EBD9TE
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,482 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Night of the Iguana" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

39 of 41 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 12, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
Tennesse Williams has rarely fared well in the transfer from stage to screen, but Night of Iguana is evidence that his work makes for powerful viewing. Stark visuals play against the subtle script and performances, with Ava Gardner giving perhaps her finest performance as the over-sexed, hard-bitten hotel owner who conceals a loving heart and honest nature behind an "I don't give a damn" mask. Burton has rarely been seen to such effect, and Deborah Kerr is quite fine. The supporting cast, featuring Grayson Hall and Sue Lyons, is remarkably strong as well. A powerful and unstinting screen adaptation of one of Williams' most powerful and unstinting plays.
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46 of 50 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 2, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
This is arguably the best film made of any of Tennessee Williams plays. It's greatness is due in great part to the direction of John Huston and the magnificent cast he has assembled to tell this story. Richard Burton and Deborah Kerr, two of the finest actors from England,give terrific performances as a tortured, defrocked priest and a strong-willed woman who has learned to survive in an unkind world. Ava Gardner proves in this film that she was a marvelous actress capable of giving a gutsy, heartfelt performance of great complexity. Grayson Hall is also quite remarkable as a hateful woman whose nasty actions are sparked by her jealousy and desire for a young woman played by Sue Lyon. The stark black and white photography of this film beautifully contributes to the mood of Tennesse William's story. This is really one of the finest films of the 1960s. It is one you can view many times over and find many pleasures.
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30 of 34 people found the following review helpful By B. J Robbins on April 13, 2001
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
Great play ... Great acting ... Great direction ... although nobody won Oscars. Who cares? John Huston wisely filmed this in stark black and white reflecting its somber tone. Burton gives the performance of lifetime as Shannon at the end of his rope, and Kerr is fantastic, as always, imbuing a tender role with even more humanity. T. Williams' play, one of the best from America's best playwright, has everything. Conflict, strong characterization, wisdom, and of course humor. Some of the coarseness of the play has been excised (Shannon's), thus making him a more sympathetic character, but this does not hurt the movie. Huston sticks pretty much to the actual play, except for the ending, which was not in the play. However, this does not really hurt the film. Anyway, buy this film and enjoy it again and again. Your life will be richer for it.
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Michael C. Smith VINE VOICE on July 22, 2005
Format: VHS Tape
Richard Burton, Deborah Kerr, Sue Lyon, Grayson Hall, and the world's most beautiful animal, Ava Gardner all came together on Mismaloya Beach in 1964 to film John Houston's film of Tennessee Williams "Night of the Iguana". With this cast, this playwright and this director we are in for a rare treat.

Burton gives one of his best tortured soul performances, which is only surpassed by his George in "Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolff?" Fresh off of his star making appearance in "Cleopatra" he displays the lessons he learned in screen acting from soon to be wife Elizabeth Taylor. Here he is not the great stage actor making a movie but a fine and immensely watchable film actor at the top of his craft.

Deborah Kerr is in top form too as a spinster artist down on her luck and at her ropes end. She is as always a fine actress who never disappoints the viewer. Sue Lyon of "Lolita" fame turns in a pitch perfect performance as a spoiled teenaged girl on the loose during a cheap vacation bus tour of Mexico. She is so good at being a brat that one forgets she is acting a part. She hits the mark of overdramatic teen in such a way that at first one thinks she is a poor actress, "Copa de Oro Larry..." but in fact it is right on the money.

Grayson Hall nearly steals the picture as the leader of the touring Baptist ladies. She is simply superb as a closeted lesbian drawn to Sue Lyon as both suppressed object of sexual desire and protective jealous mother figure. She is a joy to watch and a tragedy to witness.

But of all of Burton's ladies in the film this movie belongs to Ava Gardner. Here the famed beauty is blousy, raucous, delicious, and so ready for steaming that at 40 she hits her prime as a sexy real woman who knows who she is and what life is all about.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By T. B. Flaherty on June 25, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
This is a masterpiece. Yes, there are nits to pick, but overall, an incredible film. It's worth the price of the tape just to hear Cyril Delevanti recite his poem.
So, where is the DVD? It is a continuing mystery to me that so many really regrettable efforts make the transfer list and some wonderful films, like this one and "Becket" get ignored. Let's get with it, Warner!
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By David Kaminsky on May 20, 2003
Format: VHS Tape
Everything about this film crackles with energy and intelligence! Or, as the English might say, everything about it is on heat. We start with a script based on one of the most subtly-shaded of Williams' works (which began life as, believe it or not, a short story about two gay men on vacation in Acapulco), set it in lush, steamy Mismaloya (which Ava Gardner later called "Abysmaloya"), add great black-and-white cinematography, a spare but lovely soundtrack, and finally one of the greatest ensembles ever assembled for an American film. Richard Burton is magnificent as the defrocked "Shannon," he seems to be all sweat and emotional conflict. Deborah Kerr is serene and enigmatic as the sly "Miss Jenkins," and Ava Gardner makes a beautiful and free-spirited "Maxine." I can almost see the rum-cocos at work in Ava Gardner's very natural performance; she owns the role and makes it much more sympathetic than the earlier stage versions (Bette Davis played "Maxine" on Broadway). She is a tremendous talent and never seemed to receive the acclaim she deserved. Finally, Sue Lyons is perfectly cast as the scheming little nymphet whose sexual energy is the catalyst for all the action (and trouble) in Mismaloya. Funny, sad, and enlightening all at once, this is John Huston's most emotionally-satisfying film, and that's saying a lot. Are today's audiences intelligent enough to appreciate a film like this?
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