Saturday, February 21, 2009

Divorce Sixties Style

I wouldn't have been caught dead going to see this movie in 1967. I was way too cool for this kind of drivel. Forty plus years later, it's a fascinating look at mid-Sixties' suburbia. If you long for the old days & ways: smoking in public, drinking like a fish, wearing ladylike clothes, a bar in your basement, precociously wise kids and a single salary supports a family of four, this is the movie for you.

Everyone smokes; the housekeeper irons and smokes at the same time (multi-tasking!); the husbands smoke & drink hard liquor alot a la Mad Men. Tim Matheson, my favorite Animal, plays the oldest son. The upper middle class home about-to-be-bequeathed-in-the-settlement is worth $50,000 (can't find a starter trailer for that nowaways!). The live- in housekeeper makes $250 per month. Top salesman, Jason Robards, makes $32,000 per year and it's good money except for the alimony he's paying ex-wife, Jean Simmons. To solve this financial problem, he's pimping her out, in a manner of speaking, to the best potential new provider. She looks gorgeous; still elegant and perky. Makes me remember a movie she did a few years later called "The Happy Ending"; another movie about marriage but not the least bit lighthearted. Great song came out of that movie, "What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life?" by that most talented of movie songwriting couples, the Bergmans. They also wrote "The Way We Were" my all time favorite love song.

Ahhh, suburban nostalgia from the Sixties. And the movie isn't half bad either. Really!


Ladrón de Basura (a.k.a. Junk Thief) said...

With "Mad Men" and "Revolutionary Road", there now seems to be an obsession about this era. I remember this movie as a kid. It was a precurser to the likes of "An Unmarried Woman" and "Starting Over".

California Girl said...

It's funny to see the interest in the early sixties. I was a child.

I think the day I watched this movie, I was snowed in and bored and blogging and had the tv on in the background.

I was pretty enthralled with it because it was a snapshot in time and it reminded me of so many things.

Thank you for reading my blog!

Nancy said...

I love Mad Men! I remember all those things that would be considered debauchery today. I'll have to rent this movie - haven't watched it in many (too) many years.

mo_inoh said...

I was not even alive in the 60's lol but what i have heard it was a great time to alive, you know all that free love, wood stalk, peace love and rock and roll. seems like i always miss a good time

California Girl said...

LOL: don't you love that your moniker is LOL? the movie is definitely dated...but in a good way! wait til you see Debbie Reynold's kitchen! With just a few changes, it would be in vogue now.
I don't remember stainless steel appliances in the Sixties, but she has them.

mo_inoh: you sound like my sons. they think they missed out too. you did not. just make your own memorable times. i'd say you have alot to look forward to and Pres. Obama is asking us all to pitch in and help & volunteer. that was very in vogue in the Sixties.