To Be or Not To Be

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Released 1942

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9.8
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Movie Summary

Director:
Ernst Lubitsch
Released:
1942
Rating:
Not Available

To Be or Not To Be is a classic comedy about a theatrical troupe fighting the Nazis following the invasion of Poland in 1939. Egocentric leading man Joseph Tura suspects his wife Maria of having a secret admirer - the man who always walks out when Joseph begins performing Hamlet's famous soliloquy beginning "To be or not to be..."; but their differences are swept aside when the Nazis march in and a traitor is uncovered in the shape of the charming Professor Siletsky. Will Joseph succeed in his masquerade as the infamous Colonel Ehrhardt? Will his company escape to England? Finding laughter in the midst of terrible and tragic circumstances, To Be Or Not To Be is one of Ernst Lubitsch's greatest films, and must be seen to be appreciated.

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Metacritic Score

  • 100

    Slant Magazine Ed Gonzalez

    Many of the film's pleasures, then, derive from watching these characters successfully use the tools of the stage (improvisation, sense memory, prosthetics) to successfully subvert...

  • 100

    Time Out

    It's certainly one of the finest comedies ever to come out of Paramount, the allegations of dubious taste missing the point of Lubitsch's satire - not so much the general nastiness...

  • 100

    The Dissolve Keith Phipps

    To Be Or Not To Be works as both comedy and thriller, ratcheting up the tension and humor as the actors' scheme threatens to fall apart, and the gags build on one another.

Carole Lombard

Carole Lombard

Maria Tura

Jack Benny

Jack Benny

Joseph Tura

Robert Stack

Robert Stack

Lt. Stanislaus Sobinski

Stanley Ridges

Stanley Ridges

Professor Alexander Siletsky

Lionel Atwill

Lionel Atwill

Rawich

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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More Info About This Movie

Categories

Comedy

Themes

Showbiz, Satire, Classics