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THE GRADUATE
December 28, 2017  | By David Bianculli

AXS TV, 9:00 p.m. ET

 

More than a year before the current Harvey Weinstein et al scandals erupted, a 20-ish female student in one of my film classes at Rowan University stunned me during a discussion of how different people could watch the same film very differently. She asked how I saw Dustin Hoffman’s character in this seminal 1967 film, directed by Mike Nichols, and I told her I saw a young man determined not to follow blindly in the footsteps of a previous generation, disillusioned by the materialism all around him, and confused about his direction in life but redeemed, ultimately, by true love, though with no guarantee of a happy ending.  Then the student told me when she watched Hoffman’s character of Ben, she saw a stalker. Then she recounted his actions during the movie, including following Katharine Ross’ character to her college campus and hanging around the university just to be near her – and going so far as to crash her wedding (pictured). I’ve never seen the movie the same way since, but it’s still a classic. And this time, with Hoffman himself embroiled in his own sexually inappropriate allegation scandals with young women, I’ll focus even more on Katharine Ross.

 
 
 
 
 
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