Tuesday, 27 January 2015
Starring: Jack Lemmon, Shirley MacLaine
In general, seedy humour does not make Narry Borman laugh, and The Apartment is full of it. Those seedy little backstreet dalliances. Let's not try to normalize something so "out of order". So, the comedy element of The Apartment did nothing for NB. In fact, the script isn't even very sharp - Jack Lemmon's lines are delivered with comic timing, but there's not much to back it up, which makes him come across as a kind of Disney character. Shirley MacLaine has some funnier lines. The real comedy gold, though, comes from the Jewish wife next door - "Max the Knife!" being a standout line.
Forgetting the humorous side of things, The Apartment stands out for it's dramatic elements. Billy Wilder can sure tell a story, and he gets you involved in the characters, too. C.C.Baxter is super-sympathetic as he stands outside his apartment in the cold and the rain.
His gradual transformation into a minsch (spelling?) is quite inspiring - leading up to his delivery of one standout line in particular: "I used to live like Robinson Crusoe, shipwrecked among 8 million people. Then one day I saw a footprint in the sand. And it was yours." Soppy genius!
Well made, well acted, but not very funny.