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UK, English, 148 mins

  • Director: Peter Glenville
  • Writer: Jean Anouilh; Lucienne Hill
  • Producer: Hal B. Wallis; Joseph H. Hazen

CGiii Comment

As the story opens, King Henry II, who ruled England from 1154 to 1189 has entered Canterbury Cathedral to do penance at the tomb of his former friend, Thomas Becket. Bare to the waist, the king kneels to receive a flogging from Saxon monks. He begins to reminisce, recalling at first the carefree, promiscuous adventures with Becket, then his favorite drinking and wenching companion. A violently emotional drama that probes the changing relationship between two young men - between two close friends bound together by similar pride of flesh and spirit who become deadly enemies as they pursue their separate destinies . . . that of king . . . and saint.


Cast & Characters

Richard Burton as Becket / Thomas Becket;
Peter O'Toole as His King / King Henry II;
John Gielgud as King Louis of France / King Louis VII of France;
Gino Cervi as the Cardinal / Cardinal Zambelli;
Paolo Stoppa as the Pope / Pope Alexander III;
Donald Wolfit as Bishop Folliot;
David Weston as Brother John;
Martita Hunt as Empress Matilda;
Pamela Brown as Queen Eleanor [of Aquitaine];
Percy Herbert as Baron;
Sian Phillips as Gwendolen;
Inigo Jackson as Robert de Beaumont;
Felix Aylmer as Archbishop of Canterbury;
Niall MacGinnis as Baron;
Christopher Rhodes as Baron

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