Young adult Harold Chasen, solitary and friendless by choice, is obsessed with death, this fascination manifesting itself in he staging his own fake suicides, driving a hearse, and attending funerals, even of people he doesn't know, all to the chagrin of his exasperated wealthy mother with who he lives. Mrs. Chasen is determined for Harold to be "normal", including she sending him into therapy to deal with his issues and finding him a girlfriend through a computer dating service. It is at a series of funerals that Harold meets Maude, on the cusp of her eightieth birthday, she who too attends funerals of strangers. Unlike Harold, Maude is obsessed with life - her own life to be more precise - she doing whatever she wants to please herself, damned what others may think or how they may be affected. Since she can't take material possessions with her, she is more interested in experiences, with whatever material possessions she has - often "borrowed" without asking - only to further those ... Written by
The scenes in which Harold turns to look at the camera after successfully scaring off his first date, and when he does "the finger" behind his mother's back after she sees the Jaguar turned into a Hearse, were not in the script, rather, they were improvised by Bud Cort. See more »
About 50 minutes into the film, when Maude is doing donuts around the officer, the driver-side window of the truck is alternately up/down between shots. See more »
[after spotting Harold hanging from a noose in the living room]
I suppose you think that's very funny, Harold... Oh, dinner at eight, Harold. And do try and be a little more vivacious.
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I want to BE Maude when I am older. Ironically, I have never seen a movie that was so full of life and joy. There are many little things in this movie, little details and gags, that increase the movie's replayability. The acting is amazing. Ruth Gordon and Bud Cort have wonderful chemistry,which is a tribute to the their acting ability, as well as the tight writing and solid direction. I was sad that this movie did not garner more recognition than it did when it was released. I am also disappointed that Bud Cort has not starred in more things since this movie. Oh well. This is a good Hal Ashby movie to start with, but if you get a chance you should watch as many as possible. They are quirky, thoughtful and wonderful. "Harold and Maude" is a paean to life and love, even if it's in the weirdest places.
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