The only sad thing for me is that every time I watch this film I am reminded that their likes will not be seen again.

I am a little bit puzzled by "their likes" in the above sentence. I presume that the author wants to say he is reminded that movies of the same quality as the mentioned one will not be seen again. But why the possesive pronoun "their"? I would await "its like" which is related to the referred movie.

  • 1
    I would analyze this as a pluralization of a nominalization of the adjective like: "ones resembling". "We've never seen the likes of him".
    – TimR
    Sep 22, 2017 at 22:46

2 Answers 2


Context, context, context.

The sentence preceding the one you quote is

Fonda, Bronson, and Robards are all on "cruise control", and so most assuredly was Leone.

It is the plural "likes" of the artists—Fonda, Bronson and Robards, and probably Leone—which will not be seen again.


The like of, or the likes of is an American colloquialism generally used to indicate that the thing being talked about is exceptional in some way compared to other similar things.

A ten thousand pound pumpkin would be a pumpkin the likes of which I've never seen before.

Fonda, Bronson, Robards, and Leone were exceptional actors. We'll probably never see a group of actors that will be equal to them. This group of actors is a group of actors the likes of which will not be seen again.

That was a hurricane the likes of which we've never seen before. - meaning we've never seen a hurricane that was like this one before.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .