The Apartment details
|Formats:||PG DVD, TBC Blu-ray|
|Starring:||Naomi Stevens, Jack Lemmon, Shirley MacLaine, Joan Shawlee, Fred MacMurray, Ray Walston, Jack Kruschen, Edie Adams, David Lewis, David White, Hal Smith|
|Genres:||Comedy - British, Drama|
|Collections:||American Film Institute's top 100, Best Picture Oscar Winners|
|Run time:||2 hours|
|Rental release:||26 Nov 2001|
|Dubbed:||German, French, Spanish, Italian|
|Hearing impaired subtitles:||English|
Most helpful review
Bud Baxter is an ...By davehaviland#1 from LONDON , 29 Dec 2003
[Highly rated reviewer]Bud Baxter is an ambitious drone at a major insurance company, and he has a problem. The senior executives have got in the habit of borrowing his apartment for their extra-marital trysts, leaving him out on the streets. His cooperation ensures a series of promotions, but things become more complicated when his boss begins using the apartment for dates with Fran Kubelik, the girl he loves.
The Apartment is a classic comedy with sadness at its heart, and a model of economy and timing. The quickfire dialogue is classic Billy Wilder, such as when Fran describes a severe hangover as having a head ?like a big wad of chewing gum.? The plot is intricate and precise, veering close to farce with a host of coincidences and misunderstandings. Jack Lemmon is funny and moving by turns, and Shirley MacLaine is tender and tough, a girl you can truly imagine throwing everything away for.
However the beauty of The Apartment is in its brutal honesty. The film works overtime to convince us that the characters live in a cynical, money-driven world, where fidelity is pass? and love and sex are commodities. Bud and Fran are an active part of this, the only difference being that they dream of something better.
What?s surprising is the way the film manages to stay light and breezy while delving into some of the darkest places imaginable. In this respect it has much in common with It?s A Wonderful Life, which also uses Christmas as a double-edged backdrop; in this case the happiest time of year for those with families, the loneliest for everyone else.
The Apartment won five Oscars in 1961 including Best Picture, and is Billy Wilder?s finest achievement. There has never been a film quite like it, which is as fine a tribute as Hollywood makes.
- Was this review helpful to you?
- (20) Yes |
- No (1)
A part meant for LemmonBy blackpolekev (197 reviews) from blackpole , 03 Sep 2012This was shown today, for one day only, at a local cinema and I am so glad to have finally seen it. Jack Lemmon is just perfect as C C Baxter, the lowly office clerk who climbs the corporate ladder by sucking up to 4 senior executives by letting them use his apartment for their extra-marital affairs. I cannot think of any other actor who could have played the part so well. Fred MacMurray is also good as his sleazy, womanising boss Sheldrake who also gets in on the act of using the apartment to continue his own latest affair. Baxter is secretly in love with Fran, the elevator operator, but when he discovers by chance that she is Sheldrake's mistress his complacency is shaken to the core.
This film, made in 1960, was probably quite daring in its day, not shying away from the seamier side of life. For example even Fran, the object of Baxter's affection, is certainly no saint and I can't help thinking Baxter deserves better. After all he is actually a nice guy at heart - perhaps too nice - which is why he allows himself to be put-upon by his bosses. It's great when he finally takes his neighbour's advice and acquires a backbone. Incidentally I am puzzled by one reviewer here who says it is set in the 40s/50s. The opening narration and subsequent events make it clear the story starts in November 1959 and ends early January 1960.
Format: Cinema - Digital
Why was this never on the telly?By margo_channing (12 reviews) , 01 Sep 2012Brilliant. Decent story, great dialogue, great acting. Can't believe I've never seen it, I guess it's a bit edgy for the Saturday afternoon matinee slot. Of course the outcome is a bit predictable but don't let that get in the way of a nice afternoon on the sofa under your duvet watching this wee gem. Love it when I find the more grown up black and whites.
Good classicBy Abby88 (167 reviews) from Bognor Regis , 20 Jul 2012This film has some interesting characters and themes. It has funny moments but overall it's too bitter to be a 'comedy'. I liked it though.
Mixed FeelingsBy LadyS (2 reviews) , 29 Jul 2011This film has feels like a heartwarming classic all the way through, has a musical score to support that with a fantastic ending.
However although Baxter (Lemmon) you end up falling in love with, Fran's (MacLaine) behaviour leaves you feeling exasperated. And although at the end he 'gets the girl' you can't help but feel he deserves a hell of a lot better. This film shows the nasty side of the results of an immoral life.
Strange Concept!By buffyrules (335 reviews) from southend on sea , 05 Jul 2011There is something strange about this film-in fact the entire concept but that doesn't take away the brilliance of Lemmon. His features and even movement set him apart from the norm and his engaging nature makes you happy to watch him. Definitely not the best Wilder film as it is pretty much driven solely by the leading man.