Cactus Flower (1969)


“Funny how whenever people hurt your feelings, they’re always doing it for your own good.” – Stephanie

Number of Times Seen – 1 (14 May 2019)

Brief Synopsis – A single dentist having an affair with a young woman who thinks he is married must convince his receptionist to pretend to be his wife so that he can get divorced.

My Take on it – This is yet another film that I’ve heard about for so many years yet never had any desire to see it largely since I never chose to see what it was all about and thought it was something completely different from what it truly is and that’s an enjoyable romantic comedy.

I came across it during my quest to watch all films that have featured Oscar nominated performances and was pleasantly surprised as to how much I enjoyed it.

The story and plot is superbly written and as it gets crazier and crazier along the way, it also gets to be even more enjoyable to watch.

This all works largely due to the fact that the characters and situations stay grounded throughout and despite a few eccentricities along the way, it remains believable.

They find a way to keep the pacing of this film on the move the entire time and that’s even more impressive given the very small cast members in the film.

Walter Matthau is excellent in the lead role and hits his comedy mark every time since the dialogue is written so crisply.

He is helped along by both Ingrid Bergman and Goldie Hawn who help keep things quiet enjoyable the entire time.

Hawn deservingly was nominated for and won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her performance here which is spot on throughout.

The script was original a play and it was adapted exceptionally well by I.A.L. Diamond for the screen and he is able to keep things so fun and enjoyable from start to finish

Bottom Line – Hilarious film that gets crazier and crazier as the story moves along yet still remains grounded throughout. The premise is a great one and they manage to find a way to keep things moving the entire time even with such a small cast. Matthau is great in the lead and is helped by Bergman and Hawn to keep things so enjoyable from start to finish. Hawn deservingly was nominated for and won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her work in this film. Diamond does an amazing job adapting this play for the screen and helps keep it so much fun the entire time. Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – The play had been a comeback vehicle for Lauren Bacall following several years of inactivity once screen roles dried up. “Cactus Flower” was an enormous hit on Broadway, and Bacall garnered strong personal notices for her performance as Stephanie, playing the role for nearly two years. She was understandably disappointed when producer Mike Frankovich cast Ingrid Bergman in the film version. (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (8/10)

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3 thoughts on “Cactus Flower (1969)

  1. Pingback: Did They Get it Right? – Best Supporting Actress – Oscars 1969 | MovieRob

  2. Pingback: Movies Reviewed Index A-Z | MovieRob

  3. Pingback: Oscar Best Acting Winners | MovieRob

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