Box art for The Graduate

The Graduate

  • Rated PG
  • HD and SD formats available

comedy, drama, romance

Nominated for 7 Academy Awards and Winner for Best Directing, this groundbreaking film classic launched the career of two-time Oscar Winner Dustin Hoffman.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

ON for kids age 16
3 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Positive messages
0 out of 5
3 out of 5
0 out of 5

Influential coming-of-age sex comedy.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that this is a unique comedy charting an affair between a young man and a married friend of his parents. Much time is spent on the initial seduction and subsequent clandestine meetings in hotel rooms. Though no graphic depictions of intercourse are shown, there are brief shots of female nudity during the seduction and later in a nightclub scene, where a woman strips down to underwear and pasties. Language is fairly restrained, with a few minor curse words, like "ass" or "damn" used sparingly. Many of the adults are shown drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes very casually and with an air of acceptance.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about how well this movie has aged. Does Benjamin's lack of direction upon graduating seem applicable today, or is it more reflective of the state of youth in the 60s? Parents will definitely want to address his complicated relationship with Mrs. Robinson. Does Mrs. Robinson seem genuinely interested in Benjamin? If not, what might her motives be in seducing him? Why does Elaine seem to gain appeal for Benjamin when Mrs. Robinson forbids him to see her? Why is the movie called The Graduate?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

  • Tomatometer®

    reviews counted: 17
    see all The Graduate reviews
  • Audience


Top Critic Reviews

Fresh: A delightful, satirical comedy-drama.

- A.D. Murphy, Variety, Tuesday, February 13, 2001

Rotten: Nichols takes an ad hoc approach to comic irony and the movie seems to have been enshrined by American audiences because each moment in isolation "works," no matter that they tend to cancel each other out.

- Alan Dale,, Thursday, June 24, 2010

Fresh: The emotional elevation of the film is due in no small measure to the extraordinarily engaging performances of Anne Bancroft as the wife-mother-mistress, Dustin Hoffman as the lumbering Lancelot, and Katherine Ross as his fair Elaine.

- Andrew Sarris, Village Voice, Monday, January 14, 2013

Audience Reviews

4 stars

Could "The Graduate" be the first art-house movie of all time? Ehh, I don't think so, but it's definitely a game-changer. At its time, Hollywood dished out grand epics after grand epics with "perfect" and steady camerawork, larger than life characters, and narratives that stretch at an epic scale. But "The Graduate" does a U-turn on the traditional ways of filmmaking. Unconventional mechanics like quick zooms, strangely edited shots, and lingering close-ups are riddled about in "The Graduate". It does enough difference for it to stand out among other films alike it. But to say that the narrative is different from the rest is an understatement -- its daring, bold, and darkly challenging. Especially after the time the Production Code came to a close, "The Graduate" dives head-first into dark waters. This is a psychologically driven character-study of a young innocent boy finding his place in the world to be a "different" man. "The Graduate" is absolutely effective in what it intends to do. Everything is cohesively crafted: strong thematic foundation, solid character development, sharp writing, and thought-provoking symbolism. Entertaining, provocative, and strangely disturbing, "The Graduate" immerses audiences into a young boy's world that's trying to make the best out of his life.

- fb1463751009, Tuesday, November 27, 2012

5 stars

With the soundtrack, screenplay, direction and performances The Graduate become one of the most tense and remarkable love stories in cinema.

- fb100002359227440, Friday, August 3, 2012

4 stars

THE GRADUATE certainly is the classic I've been told of. The somewhat quirky characters and their dialogue give this movie some outrageously funny wit, yet there is also a great amount of drama. The film is actually much more a drama, just touched up lovingly with comedy. We see the story through the eyes of Benjamin Braddock, who is a week away from turning twenty-one years old when the story unfolds. He's a rather calm, patient character who would be nice to be around. Complemented by the serene soundtrack by Simon & Garfunkel, his character takes off. Dustin Hoffman's performance indeed familiarizes us with his character even more. The depth produced is what makes such heated arguments placed in the latter half of the film so emotional. It's impressive how much we understand him and his point of view without one bit of narration. read more at

- spielberg00, Thursday, July 12, 2012