The Birdcage

The Birdcage

A FILM BY: Mike Nichols
WRITTEN BY: Jean Poiret (play), Francis Veber (earlier screenplay)
STARRING: Robin Williams, Nathan Lane, Gene Hackman, Dianne Wiest, Hank Azaria

Many people still remembered the 1978 French-Italian comedy hit LA CAGE AUX FOLLES and the 1983 stage musical — when Mike Nichols’ remake, written by his old comedy partner Elaine May, came out. But now it’s THE BIRDCAGE that has grown in reputation. First there are the performances: Robin Williams as gay club owner Armand and Nathan Lane as his flamboyant partner Albert, plus Gene Hackman and Dianne Wiest as a conservative senator and his wife who, thanks to the engagement between their daughter and Armand’s son, are about to become the new in-laws. Then there’s the writing, which tackles the implications of embracing or covering up your sexual (as well as religious) identities, plus Nichols’ always-sure hand behind the camera. (Side note: Emmanuel Lubezki, who won three consecutive cinematography Oscars for GRAVITY, BIRDMAN, and THE REVENANT, shot this.) These culture-clash issues haven’t exactly dissipated over the past 21 years, so will THE BIRDCAGE feel more dated or fresh now? Let’s find out.

Technical Information

Production Year: 1996
Country of Origin: United States
Language: English
Run Time: 117 mins
Format: 35mm