Under the Volcano
Under the Volcano (1984)

A strange, hallucinatory adaptation of Malcolm Lowry's novel is set during the Mexican "Day of the Dead" ceremony in 1939. Albert Finney stars as the booze-besotted former British consul to Cuernevarca, who has cut himself off… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Genre: Drama
Release Date: June 13, 1984
DVD Release Date: October 23, 2007
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Critic Score: 75% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Variety Staff

Although this voyage into self-destruction won't be to the taste of many, there will be few unmoved by Finney's towering performance as the tragic Britisher.

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Janet Maslin
New York Times

Daring as it is to have brought Under the Volcano to the screen in this faithful but incomplete form, Mr. Huston has done so without making compromises in the process.

Emanuel Levy

John Huston's version of Malcolm Lowry's dense, poetic unfilmable book is ambitious but only semi-effective in conveying this cult novel's tone; it's ultimately saved by the towering performance of Albert Finney as the alcoholic self-destructive consul

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Time Out

Not for the purists, maybe, but the last half-hour, as Firmin plunges ever deeper into his self-created hell, leaves one shell-shocked.

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Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

As the tortured consul, Albert Finney has moments of technical brilliance, but Huston's direction gives him no inner life.

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TV Guide

The result is very much worth the wait, bringing to life the mysticism of Mexico with a superb script by Guy Gallo, exquisite photography, and the unparalleled performance by Finney.

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Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

The movie belongs to Finney, but mention must be made of Jacqueline Bisset as his wife and Anthony Andrews as his half-brother.

Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Succeeds in capturing the novel's sense of doom and gets a tour de force performance from Albert Finney.

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Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Spirituality and Practice

Captures and conveys the hot music of what some literary critics have called the greatest religious novel of the twentieth century

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More reviews for Under the Volcano

Flixster Audience Score: 70% Flixster User Reviews
Stella Dallas
while this is often compared to 'night of the iguana' i found it a much more fulfilling experience. huston was 78 when he made this and proves he… More
Danny Rovira
Director John Huston's fascinating character study of a self-destructive alcoholic former British diplomat named Geoffery Firmin, played by Albert Finney… More
Pierluigi Puccini
"That's the way to contend with the grim reaper, offering him a drink and a dance..." Finney, what a performance.
A later day John Huston film. This follows a diplomat to Mexico during the last day of his life, the action takes place immediately before the start of World… More
John Ballantine
A bitter portrayal by Albert Finney of a man on the road to destruction. It is off the wall and bends reality sufficiently to off put many a viewer.
cody franklin
It amazes me how an elder John Huston was always able to reinvent himself. In my opinion Huston is the most diverse American filmaker in movie history and he… More