The Adding Machine (1969)


This satirical fantasy is based upon an Elmer Rice play from 1923. A hard-working office employee is rewarded for his years of slavish devotion to the company by getting fired just prior to retirement and being replaced with an adding machine. Now, with only his nagging wife waiting at home to add more misery to his dreary life, the man has nothing left and goes over the edge.

Director: Jerome Epstein.
Writers: Elmer Rice (play), Jerome Epstein (written for the screen by), Charles Chaplin (uncredited).
Stars: Milo O’Shea, Phyllis Diller, Billie Whitelaw, Sydney Chaplin, Julian Glover, Raymond Huntley, Phil Brown, Paddie O’Neil, Libby Morris, Hugh McDermott, Bill Nagy, Carol Cleveland, Bruce Boa.


Note: Many thanks to Michael for sending me a copy of this film.

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  1. Steven Burstein
    December 24, 2021

    What a fascinating film! Charlie Chaplin wrote the under-the-title music and the final scenes without credit, AND Monty Python’s own Carol Cleveland is in it!

  2. Augustine Hawley
    April 28, 2022

    ….It’s an in-your-face allegory (or the truth) of what this world is (too terrifying to contemplate) for many people…or maybe for everybody! freedom or enslaved imprisonment are or can be viewed/tolerated as illusions.Phyllis Diller was the perfect droll jester to play a macabre black comedy foil !

  3. July 1, 2022

    I saw this movie just once, in about 1986, one afternoon quite by accident and I never forgot it. I was so happy to finally find it here and watch it again! Thank you!

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