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Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Boom! (1968) - Star of the month... Elizabeth Taylor

"The chopping of a head is a sure cure for a tongue that's too big for a mouth" - Elizabeth Taylor (as Sissy Goforth in 'Boom!')

'Boom!' is a 1968 British drama directed by Joseph Losey and starring Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, Noel Coward and Joanna Shimkus. The film was adapted by Tennessee Williams, from his play 'The Milk Train Doesn't Stop Here Anymore'.

Sissy Goforth (played by Taylor) is one of the richest women in the world, living on her lavish private island home on Isle Goforth. While she is dictating her memoirs for an autobiography to her secretary Miss Black (played by), a drifter poet named Chris (played by Burton) washes up on the island's beach.  Sissy is set into panic mode after the Witch of Capri (played by Coward) informs her Chris is the angel of death, and visits people just before they die.

Elizabeth Taylor & Richard Burton on the set of the film - and yes,
Liz wears that thing on her head in the film

Did you know...

  • This was the eighth of eleven films real-life husband and wife Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton made together
  • This was writer Tennessee Williams' favourite film adaptation of all his plays
  • Tennessee Williams had wanted Sean Connery to play the role of Chris Flanders, but he declined
  • James Fox was originally meant to play Chris Flanders, however Elizabeth Taylor wanted her husband Richard Burton, even though Burton was 20 years older than the character he was playing
  • This is one of film director's John Waters' favourite films
  • Topol rejected the opportunity to appear in this film
  • James Bernard was considered to compose the film's musical score
  • This was the first mainstream British film to include the word "Shit" in it's dialogue

Closing remarks

This film won't appeal to all tastes, and I think a more appropriate title for the film would have been 'Bomb!', as that's essentially what it was when it was released.

Elizabeth Taylor is well-cast as rich bitch Sissy, living on a private island with countless servants at her beck and call. I do like the spectacular home with it's classic Mediterranean architecture and modern interior design and furniture. The home is complimented with gorgeous location photography taken in Sardinia and Rome in Italy.

In my opinion Elizabeth Taylor's worst film, which caused irreparable damage to her box office success and film career. I recommend watching this film only if you love Elizabeth Taylor... a lot!

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