Director: Gene Saks
Date released: 16th August 1968
Written by: Neil Simon
Starring: Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau
The ending is a little rushed. It has several memorable moments but was obviously originally written for the stage. It’s not very cinematic. I’d have probably enjoyed this more were I watching it in its originally intended medium. It’s a great concept because it’s about contrasting extremes; all of us have such contradictions in our own lives, our own neuroticisms and flaws. What this film does is to exaggerate them by personifying the two extremes as whole characters, thus the humerus derives from just how wide that gap actually is. The disadvantage is that the titular “Odd Couple” become ciphers, within clearly defined traits. Once they begin developing, they stray away from the humour, and in order to maintain the humour, they must remain one dimensional. The question therefore is: can the humour really be sustained for that long? Apparently so, though I do still wonder whether – having not seen the television series that this film inspired – the comedy is taken here only as far as it can be.
Eat it over the plate.