Segments in this Video

"The Critic": Introduction (03:04)


Mr. King locks Richard Sheridan in the green room to finish the ending of the play; Sheridan promises a battle. (Credits)

"The Critic": Theatrical Review (05:56)

Mr. and Mrs. Dangle read the papers while having breakfast; Mr. Dangle finds the review about "The Spanish Armada" written by Mr. Puff. Mrs. Dangle laments the loss of peace in her home during the theatrical season; she has no patience for Mr. Dangle. Mr. Dangle defends his position as the head of critics.

"The Critic": Morality in Theater (03:39)

Mr. Sneer joins the Dangles and presents Mr. Dangle with two plays he wants Mr. Dangle to make the managers accept. Mrs. Dangle and Mr. Sneer regret the style of plays the theater typically produces; Mr. Dangle disapproves of audience reactions.

"The Critic": Validation (04:37)

Mr. Dangle and Sneer mock Sir Fretful Plagiary, but treat him cordially when he enters the room. Plagiary sent his play to the manager of the Covent Garden Theater; he refuses to send a play to Drury Lane. The men discuss the possibility of plagiarism.

"The Critic": Critiquing Plagiary (03:36)

Sneer believes Plagiary's play lacks incident, Mr. Dangle believes the play "falls off" in the fifth act, and Mrs. Dangle thinks the play is a little too long; Plagiary refutes all claims. Plagiary claims to ignore newspaper articles and vows they are the best panegyric.

"The Critic": Bad Review (03:34)

Sneer and Mr. Dangle suggest that a newspaper article attacked Plagiary and Plagiary becomes anxious. Sneer presents a fictitious review; Plagiary tries to appear as though the review has no effect on him.

"The Critic": Critical Judgments (02:58)

The butler announces the arrival of a musical Italian family and interpreter. Plagiary becomes animated when reiterating that negative reviews do not vex him; Sneer and Mr. Dangle laugh when he leaves the room. Sneer convinces Mr. Dangle to persuade Mr. Puff to allow Sneer to attend a rehearsal.

"The Critic": Musical Audition (05:44)

Mr. and Mrs. Dangle have difficulty understanding the interpreter, but communicate that the audition can commence. The family performs for the Dangles and Sneer.

"The Critic": Puff's History (05:09)

Mr. Puff arrives; Mrs. Dangle to provide the musicians with refreshments in another room. Mr. Puff declares he is a practitioner of the panegyric and remarks on his success with advertisement; he made a comfortable living from misfortunes.

"The Critic": Art of Puffing (07:31)

Puff writes an account of a play the day before it is to be performed; Sneer questions the benefits of Puff's reviews. Puff provides examples of the Puff Preliminary, Puff Collateral, Puff Collusive, and Puff Oblique. Puff grants Sneer permission to attend the rehearsal of his new tragedy.

"The Critic": Rehearsal (05:01)

Puff explains the title of his tragedy and discusses introducing love into his play. Sneer, Mr. Dangle, and Puff watch the rehearsal from boxed seats; Puff explains the opening setting.

"The Critic": Sir Raleigh and Christopher Hatton (04:15)

Sneer asks questions to better understand the play. Puff provides commentary, interrupting the actors.

"The Critic": Earl of Leicester (04:32)

Puff explains the characters in scene two and suggests Dangle and Puff will hear better language. Sneer questions why the earl prays to Mars.

"The Critic": Tilburina (04:37)

The sleeping sentinels are Lord Burleigh's spies. Canon fire signals the morning and Tilburina enters the scene. She begins to explain her sorrow when Puff interrupts and suggests she use the handkerchief. Tilburina continues her dialogue and reveals a cut in the script.

"The Critic": Second Sight (02:48)

The Governor enters the scene to find Tilburina in tears. Puff explains the theatrical tactic of seeing and hearing what is not present. The scene continues with another cut and Puff explains the missing pieces. Tilburina tries to convince her father to accept her lover but she agrees to obey his command.

"The Critic": Don Ferolo Whiskerandos (04:44)

Tilburina's love enters the scene; Puff criticizes Tilburina's reaction. Whiskerandos initially believes Tilburina is untrue but the lovers reconcile and lament their departure. Puff becomes with two cuts to the scene.

"The Critic": Unforeseen Complications (03:29)

Puff provides a brief outline of the second plot to and learns the performers cut the description scene, making it impossible for the carpenters to change the background in time. The orchestra performs and Sneer and Dangle receive refreshments while Puff attempts to rectify the matter.

"The Critic": Underplot (04:08)

Puff urges the performers to continue despite being upset about the cuts to his play. The justices consider the next case when a young man named Tom enters the scene; he is a long-lost family member.

"The Critic": Mysterious Yeoman (05:17)

The Beefeater enters the stage and receives instruction from Puff before delivering a short soliloquy. Lord Burleigh arrives and sits silently on the chair. He eventually stands, looks to the side, and exits the stage; puff explains the meaning.

"The Critic": Love and Vengeance (07:08)

Sir Raleigh and Christopher Hatton's nieces love Don Ferolo Whiskerandos; Puff interrupts the performance. Whiskerandos arrives and the women vow revenge, triggering more threats of violence. The Beefeater orders everyone to drop their weapons and challenges Whiskerandos; Whiskerandos and the Beefeater repeat the death scene.

"The Critic": Effects of Death (03:17)

The Governor laments the loss of his prisoner and exits the stage. Tilburina and her confidante appear; they have gone mad. Puff introduces the final scene.

"The Critic": Battle Scene (06:26)

Puff explains the appearance of the Thames. The scenery changes to a sea battle and performers sing about Britain's fight and "Rule Britannia." The symbol of Britain sinks.

"The Critic": Grand Finale (05:04)

Puff joins the procession on stage; the Thames appears with a stagnant expression. Puff tries to make corrections to the performance and gets tangled in the streamers. Sheridan finishes the final scene of the play and demands to be released from the green room.

Credits: The Critic, by Richard Brinsley Sheridan (01:57)

Credits: The Critic, by Richard Brinsley Sheridan

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The Critic, by Richard Brinsley Sheridan

DVD (Chaptered) Price: $300.00
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3-Year Streaming Price: $300.00



Don Taylor directs the film adaptation of the 18th century classic play by Richard Brinsley Sheridan that takes aim at the pretensions of the theater world. Would-be playwright and critic Mr. Puff invites associates to his view his ridiculous play The Spanish Armada, confident the play was well written. The film stars John Gielgud, Hywel Bennett, and Nigel Hawthorne.

Length: 110 minutes

Item#: BVL128839

ISBN: 978-1-64023-727-8

Copyright date: ©1982

Closed Captioned

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Not available to Home Video and Publisher customers.