The Odd Couple

1968

Action / Comedy

13
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 100%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 89%
IMDb Rating 7.7 10 27902

Synopsis


Uploaded By: LINUS
Downloaded 18,537 times
February 27, 2016 at 05:30 AM

Director

Cast

Jack Lemmon as Felix Ungar
Walter Matthau as Oscar Madison
Billie Bird as Chambermaid
John Fiedler as Vinnie
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
754.5 MB
1280*544
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 45 min
P/S 3 / 2
1.58 GB
1920*816
English
NR
23.976 fps
1hr 45 min
P/S 4 / 3

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Danusha_Goska Save Send Delete 10 / 10

How American Manhood Has Changed

I remember something that Roger Ebert said in an interview with Martin Scorcese. Ebert said that "Raging Bull" was a great movie. People would protest that they didn't want to see it because they didn't want to see a film about boxers. No, Ebert insisted. The subject matter of a film is not the heart of the film. Rather, it's how well a film is made that matters. An expertly made film about boxers is better than a badly made film about a topic you may be interested in. So, no, I'm not a man; I'm not divorced. But "The Odd Couple" was so well made that I fell in love with it. I surprised myself by laughing out loud throughout the film.

"The Odd Couple," of course, is the story of news writer Felix Unger leaving his wife and children and moving in with his friend, sports writer Oscar Madison, who is himself a divorcée. Oscar lives in an eight-room Manhattan apartment, which he used to share with his wife and their kids. Felix is neat; Oscar is messy. Sounds pretty trite.

But the movie is a revelation. The script reveals surprising depth about love, hate, and human relationships. The Walter-Matthau-Jack-Lemmon team is like a well-oiled machine – they seem to have perfected their shtick together through several lifetimes.

Jack Lemmon plays the entire movie completely straight. He gives the exact same kind of performance as he did when he was acting in "The Days of Wine and Roses," a hyper serious film about alcoholism. When Lemmon, as Felix, is upset about his meatloaf burning, he shows as much agony as he showed in the previous film about a drunk ruining his own life. It's hysterically funny to watch this poor schmuck wrestle with his petty obsessions and compulsions, oblivious to how he affects others. Even as you laugh at him, you realize he can't help himself. Felix Unger has Asperger's.

What has changed in America, and American film, that this film from 1968 feels like a time capsule from a lost moment in America? Oscar lives in a spacious, eight-room Manhattan apartment. Manhattan real estate has become more expensive, of course. But it's more than that.

The words that kept going through my head as I was watching the movie were "grown-up" and "intelligent."

Oscar, Felix, and their poker buddies are six white guys. They meet and play poker. There are no scenes where these adult, white men are revealed to be inept in comparison to women, blacks, or homosexuals. There are no scenes where the sassy gay man instructs the straight men on how to dress or create romance. There are no scenes where the "magical negro" shows the men that they can't dance. There are no scenes where a woman puts the men down for not knowing how to take care of children or shows the men up as being blinded by lust. There are no scenes where these straight, white men are made to apologize for being straight, white men.

The men are grownups. They have jobs. They wear adult clothing. They wear white shirts and ties, slacks, belts, and shiny shoes. Oscar does wear a backwards baseball cap, but he is the clown of the group. And he does not wear it throughout the film. When he goes out, he dresses properly.

They speak of their marriages as if marriage were something important. They speak of their children as if they love them.

They go on dates. They ask women out, dress up for the occasion, and make witty banter with subtle double entendres.

While watching "The Odd Couple," I thought of recent Judd Apatow comedies starring men like Jason Segel, Paul Rudd and Jonah Hill. These current male stars all play children; they all play losers. They play failed men. The humor in these films is built around what pathetic creatures they are. In "Forgetting Sarah Marshall," Jason Segel, who is fat and prematurely saggy, is shown fully naked. The nakedness highlights his humiliation when his girlfriend, Sarah Marshall, dumps him. These films all use the F word over and over in a manner that feels desperate and limited.

There is one very sly, very funny reference to the f word in "The Odd Couple." Oscar complains to Felix Unger that he is tired of getting little notes from Felix like "We are all out of cornflakes. Signed, FU." Oscar says it took him hours to figure out what "FU" meant. A funny joke. Delivered deliciously. The only time "The Odd Couple" has to refer to the F word to get a laugh.

I've never felt, while watching a Judd Apatow comedy, that I was gaining any insight into the human condition. There are so many payoff moments of absurd comedy in "The Odd Couple," as when Oscar steps on a vacuum cleaner cord and then takes his foot off the cord at just the right moment to send Felix reeling. But there were so many moments that made me say, "Gosh, yes, that's what human relationships are like. That's what it's like to love/hate another human being."

I can't imagine a film like "The Odd Couple" being made today. A genuinely funny, intelligent, rich, grownup comedy about men that shines light on the human condition and that need never speak the F word to get a laugh. And I can't imagine anyone other than a Trump being able to afford that eight-room apartment in Manhattan.

Reviewed by breakdownthatfilm-blogspot-com 8 / 10

A comedy classic

Not every pairing is a perfect match. Everyone has their idiosyncrasies that only suits them. It's this part of living with someone else, one must learn to accept those differences. There's a give and take when it comes to these kinds of set ups. During the mid 20th century and before, married folks were under much more pressure to maintain their vows. If a divorce occurred, it was frowned upon, so many stuck it out. However, if one partner did leave the other, sometimes it was never brought to light. As time has progressed though, the notion of marriages not lasting forever isn't as uncommon. But would any of the separated ones hang out with another person from another divorce? Well look no further than to Neal Simon's film adaptation of one of his famous plays. Best known for putting the show on Broadway, Simon took it to the next step by writing a screenplay for the film.

The story follows two men divorced by their wives that find some level of compensation through each others' tendencies. Oscar Madison (Walter Matthau) is a slob who can't get his act together for anything, especially maintaining any sort of common cleanliness. Felix Ungar (Jack Lemmon) is the exact opposite. He finds keeping things neat and tidy something that's fulfilling. However, Ungar took it to the extreme; finding almost EVERYTHING not to his liking because it was no according to his level of order. Yet somehow the two boneheads manage to make it work, at first. Until they start to realize how polarizing their preferences are, that's when things go bananas. And for what's shown, the execution is well done thanks to director Gene Saks. He may have not directed that many films in his lifetime, but he did helm Barefoot in the Park (1967), Cactus Flower (1969) and Brighton Beach Memoirs (1986).

There's a great mix of comedic timing and writing handled by the actors and Simon's writing. Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau are a funny duo in this feature film. Lemmon perfectly drives up the hypochondriac scale past its peak, making cleaning and timeliness feel way more important than it should be. While Matthau distorts any sort of reality by feeding his guests with varying color assorted sandwiches. But of these two, the actor who steals the show was Matthau. His comedic talent shines through with some of the most hilarious lines ever spoken. And though what's said at times may not make sense immediately, the reasoning can be validated. There's also appearances from Herb Edelman, John Fiedler, David Sheiner, and Larry Haines, who play Oscar and Felix's gambling buddies. They two have their funny moments. One of the greater interactions however performed between Matthau and Lemmon were with Monica Evans and Carole Shelley.

These two actress really nailed their skills in sounding like sisters. Their giggles and reactions to either Matthau's and Lemmon's lines or themselves is well articulated and timed. Walter Matthau was known for several films like JFK (1991) and Grumpy Old Men (1993). Jack Lemmon is best known for other films too like The Great Race (1965), Airport '77 (1977), Short Cuts (1993) and Hamlet (1996). Both would also star in The Odd Couple II (1998). John Fiedler was best known for playing Piglet in all the Winnie the Pooh related films up until his passing in 2005. Herb Edelman was mainly a TV actor in shows like The Golden Girls and The Love Boat. The same could said for David Sheiner and Larry Haines. For Monica Evans, her career would not go much further but she would still voice Abigail from Disney's The Aristocats (1970) and Maid Marian from Robin Hood (1973). Carole Shelley also voiced characters in those two films but also voiced Lachesis from Hercules (1997).

The only component to not really come out looking unique was the camerawork. Provided by Robert B. Hauser, the cinematography is adequate for the movie. The problem is that it just doesn't have a real iconic setting. Sure, Oscar Madison's apartment is one of the more well known places to be featured in a movie, but it's just an apartment. The camera lens is wide enough to take all of the den and then some. Yet the audience only gets a good view of that, the kitchen and the main hallway. There's a bunch of other rooms but they're not explored that much either. Hauser also filmed for The Sweet Ride (1968), How to Steal the World (1968) and Soldier Blue (1970). For the film score, Neal Hefti brought the popular main theme to life. Although he only scored for a couple other films after, it would be this motif that would forever make his name recognizable. Throughout the movie, music isn't that abundant. But when it is, it's a classic sound.

While the cinematography is professionally crafted, it's just not that engaging when it comes to variety of areas to explore. Aside from this though, everything about this classic comedy works amazingly well. The music is catchy when heard, the comedic timing from the actors is well done and Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau steal the show with their funny lines.

Reviewed by LilyDaleLady 2 / 10

Can this really be almost 50 years old?

And how many times has it been made and remade? I'm probably more familiar overall with the TV series version, with Jack Krugman and Tony Randall, which by necessity had to broaden the story and pump up the minor supporting characters. There's even 1-2 FEMALE versions.

But the original has more lives than a cat -- several FILM versions, plus countless stage productions since the 1960s.

I've never completely got what is supposedly so funny about it, except some universal battle between sloppy folks and neat freaks.

Just caught some of it on late-night TV, and one thing -- nit picky, but it drove me nuts (my inner Felix Ungar?) -- is when Felix is cooking dinner for Oscar and two ditsy Pidgeon sisters.

The whole thing is predicated on Oscar coming home "late" -- by about 30 minutes -- and Felix's meatloaf is "ruined". In fact, we see it later as a flaming charcoal briquette....why not turn the heat OFF?

This is the kind of departure from reality that makes me crazy in films. Meatloaf is about the easiest, most relaxed food on earth. It keeps for HOURS -- even DAYS -- once cooked, you can eat it COLD (it's delicious -- try it some time!). You can cook it and reheat it, and if anything, the flavor is even better having mellowed.

There is no way, not even for a nut like Felix, that a meatloaf would have to be served instantly or "go bad". For starters: after cooking, the meat must "rest" for 20 minutes or so.

On top of that: when he goes shopping....and the whole premise is they are eating at home to "save money"...Felix goes to the butcher and orders FOUR POUNDS of freshly ground beef. Good lordy! Neil Simon clearly never cooked a meatloaf in his life, nor even bothered to look up a recipe! FOUR POUNDS! that would make enough meatloaf for a dozen people, with leftovers.

Meatloaf is a classic Depression-era recipe intended to STRETCH a very small amount of ground meat - with fillers, bread crumbs, chopped veggies, beaten eggs, etc. -- so that a pound of meat or LESS could feed a family. A meatloaf that was "all beef" would be greasy, heavy and terrible.

It makes no sense for two "broke bachelor's" trying to save money on a dinner date, to buy FOUR POUNDS of ground beef (even at 1967 prices). Even considering how eccentric Felix is - - how OCD -- the way he's cooking this, and acting like a meatloaf is a fragile soufflé, just makes zero sense.

NOTE: as a broke young woman years ago, I used to be able to concoct a full sized -- and delicious! -- meatloaf from one scant HALF POUND of ground beef, bolstered with a lot of add-ins like bread crumbs and beaten egg, and a few secret ingredients. I will happily supply that recipe -- Lily"s Famous Meatloaf" on request to anyone interested!

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