Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Movie: The Women

This movie - The Women - made in 1939 has to be one of my all time favourite films.  Its cast features women only - not man in sight - only the reference to any male.  The premise of the story is one of divorce amongst the rich Manhattan set when one of our heroines discovers her husband's infidelity via a manicurist in the department store.  And off we journey on the divorce train bound for Reno.

The cast is stellar - some of the most wonderful actresses of the period - Joan Crawford, Norma Shearer, Marjorie Main (she of Ma Kettle fame), Rosalind Russell - to name a few.  

Here is a little snippet from the IMDb website:
"Wealthy Mary Haines is unaware her husband is having an affair with shopgirl Crystal Allen. Sylvia Fowler and Edith Potter discover this from a manicurist and arrange for Mary to hear the gossip. On the train taking her to a Reno divorce Mary meets the Countess and Miriam (in an affair with Fowler's husband). While they are at Lucy's dude ranch, Fowler arrives for her own divorce and the Countess meets fifth husband-to-be Buck. Back in New York, Mary's ex is now unhappily married to Crystal who is already in an affair with Buck. When Sylvia lets this story slip at a country club dinner, Crystal brags of her plans for a still wealthier marriage, only to find the Countess is the source of all Buck's money. Crystal must return to the perfume counter and Mary runs back to her husband."

Now - there was a remake - in 2008 - with Meg Ryan - which in my humble opinion was a complete train wreck as re-makes go.  There was no way that this 1930s storyline was ever going to transpose into the modern day world of the 2000s.  Eva Mendez sizzles with va-va-va-voom as the husband-stealing shopgirl - and hers is the only decent performance from what purports to being a top-notch female cast.

So I strongly recommend getting your hands on a copy of this original movie and enjoy it for what it is - a wonderful story with extraordinary characters!

See also the wikipedia site for "The Women"

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