John Huston

Under the Volcano

Under the Volcano

Under the Volcano follows the final day in the life of self-destructive British consul Geoffrey Firmin (Albert Finney, in an Oscar-nominated tour de force) on the eve of World War II. Withering from alcoholism, Firmin stumbles through a small Mexican village amidst the Day of the Dead fiesta, attempting to reconnect with his estranged wife (Jacqueline Bisset) but only further alienating himself. John Huston's ambitious tackling of Malcolm Lowry's towering “unadaptable” novel gave the incomparable Finney one of his grandest roles and was the legendary The Treasure of the Sierra Madre director's triumphant return to filmmaking in Mexico.

Film Info

  • John Huston
  • United States
  • 1984
  • 112 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.78:1
  • English
  • Spine #410

Special Features

  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised by film editor Roberto Silvi
  • Audio commentary featuring executive producer Michael Fitzgerald and producers Wieland Schulz-Keil and Moritz Borman
  • Theatrical trailers
  • New video interview with Jacqueline Bisset
  • New audio interview with screenwriter Guy Gallo
  • 1984 audio interview with John Huston conducted by French film critic Michel Ciment
  • Notes from "Under the Volcano" (1984), a 59-minute documentary by Gary Conklin shot on the set during the film's production, featuring interviews with Huston, cast, and crew
  • Volcano: An Inquiry into the Life and Death of Malcolm Lowry (1976), filmmaker Donald Brittain's 99-minute, Academy Award–nominated documentary, narrated by Richard Burton, examining the connections between Under the Volcano author Malcolm Lowry's life and that of his novel's main character
  • PLUS: A new essay by film critic Christian Viviani

New cover by Michael Boland

Purchase Options

Special Features

  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer, supervised by film editor Roberto Silvi
  • Audio commentary featuring executive producer Michael Fitzgerald and producers Wieland Schulz-Keil and Moritz Borman
  • Theatrical trailers
  • New video interview with Jacqueline Bisset
  • New audio interview with screenwriter Guy Gallo
  • 1984 audio interview with John Huston conducted by French film critic Michel Ciment
  • Notes from "Under the Volcano" (1984), a 59-minute documentary by Gary Conklin shot on the set during the film's production, featuring interviews with Huston, cast, and crew
  • Volcano: An Inquiry into the Life and Death of Malcolm Lowry (1976), filmmaker Donald Brittain's 99-minute, Academy Award–nominated documentary, narrated by Richard Burton, examining the connections between Under the Volcano author Malcolm Lowry's life and that of his novel's main character
  • PLUS: A new essay by film critic Christian Viviani

New cover by Michael Boland

Under the Volcano
Cast
Albert Finney
Geoffrey Firmin
Jacqueline Bisset
Yvonne Firmin
Anthony Andrews
Hugh Firmin
Ignacio Lopez Tarzo
Dr. Vigil
Katy Jurado
Senora Gregoria
James Villiers
Brit
Dawson Bray
Quincey
Carlos Riquelme
Bustamante
Rene Ruiz (Tun Tun)
Dwarf
Credits
Director
John Huston
Producer
Moritz Borman
Producer
Wieland-Schulz Keil
Screenplay
Guy Gallo
Executive producer
Michael Fitzgerald
Music
Alex North
Editing
Roberto Silvi
Production design
Gunther Gerzso
Cinematography
Gabriel Figueroa
Production supervisor
Tom Shaw

From The Current

At Work on Under the Volcano
At Work on Under the Volcano

Never has a Hollywood filmmaker been less fazed by the prospect of tackling adaptations of major books than the journeyman director John Huston. By the time he dug his nails into Malcolm Lowry’s 1947 Under the Volcano (ranked the eleventh greatest …

On Film / Short Takes
Aug 10, 2012
Wise Blood: A Matter of Life and Death
Wise Blood:
A Matter of Life and Death

Novelists learn not to expect too much when their books are made into movies. Obviously, great fiction has been turned into great cinema, but the dents and scrapes that so many classics have sustained on the rocky road from the page to the screen hav…

By Francine Prose

On Film / Essays — May 12, 2009

Feb 13, 2009
Under the Volcano: Before the Stillness

Under the Volcano, made in 1984, is the thirty-fourth of thirty-six feature films in a body of work that began in 1941 with The Maltese Falcon. Already ill but brimming with vitality, John Huston was then seventy-eight years old. He had always altern…

By Christian Viviani


Oct 23, 2007