This week’s mystery movie has been the 1970 film “The Boys in the Band,” with Kenneth Nelson, Frederick Combs, Cliff Gorman, Laurence Luckinbill, Keith Prentice, Peter White, Reuben Greene, Robert La Tourneaux and Leonard Frey. Written and produced by Mart Crowley, photographed by Arthur J. Ornitz, production design by John Robert Lloyd, costumes by W. Robert La Vine, set decorations by Phil Smith, editing by Carl Lerner and Gerald Greenberg, directed by William Friedkin.
“The Boys in the Band” is available on DVD from Amazon.
Writing in the New York Times (March 18, 1970), Vincent Canby said:
“The Boys in the Band” is a well made play, a little too well made, too mechanical to be especially interesting. Not as obvious, perhaps, is the fact that many conventions of contemporary stage direction (so evident in both the play and the film), as well as the mannerisms of a certain kind of fake‐elegant, American homosexual, are patterned after fashions set 30 or 40 years ago on the Broadway stage.
Thus one can understand why William Friedkin, the director, has transferred the play’s consciously archaic theatricality so faithfully to the screen—with the original Off Broadway cast, and almost every line of bitchy, fake‐elegant dialogue, intact. Friedkin, who directed the very pleasant “The Night They Raided Minsky’s” and the extremely intelligent film adaptation of Pinter’s “The Birthday Party,” was not hired to improve “The Boys in the Band,” but to preserve it.
Clive Barnes’ original 1968 review of the Off-Broadway play is here.
For Monday, we have a mystery gent.
This mystery gent, alas, remains unidentified. Several members of the Brain Trust thought he was Michael Blodgett, but I’m afraid not.
For Tuesday, we have a mystery gent.
Update: This is Reuben Greene.
Brain Trust roll call: Howard Mandelbaum, Jenny M., B.J. Merholz and Megan Gledhill identified Monday’s mystery gent as the same actor. Unfortunately, even though he has lines and solo screen time, he isn’t listed anywhere. I think you’re right, and I’ll give you credit but I will defer the final decision until people identify the mystery movie.
For Wednesday, we have a mystery gent.
Update: This is Robert La Tourneaux.
For Thursday, we have this mystery gent …
Update: This is Cliff Gorman.
… and this mystery gent.
Update: This is Peter White.
Brain Trust roll call: Roget-L.A. (mystery movie and Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s mystery guests), Howard Mandelbaum (mystery movie and Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s mystery guests, and he withdraws his guess on Monday’s mystery guest), Mary Mallory (mystery movie and Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s mystery guests) and E. Yarber (mystery movie and Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s mystery guests).
For Friday, we have the rest of the mystery cast.
Update: This is Leonard Frey.
Update: This is Laurence Luckinbill.
Update: This is Keith Prentice.
Update: This is Kenneth Nelson and Frederick Combs.
Brain Trust roll call: “Megan Gledhill” (mystery movie and Wednesday’s and Thursday’s mystery guests), Mary Mallory (Thursday’s mystery guests), Mike Hawks (mystery movie and Wednesday’s mystery gent and Thursday’s mystery gent with the rose), Gary (mystery movie), B.J. Merholz (Thursday’s mystery gent with the rose), Patrick (mystery movie and Thursday’s mystery gent with the rose), Howard Mandelbaum (Thursday’s mystery guests), E. Yarber (right movie/wrong actors) and L.C. (mystery movie).