Norma Shearer, Rosalind Russell, Joan Crawford. Dir: George Cukor

Another groundbreaking film from the greatest year of cinema- 1939.

Short recommendation: Awesome, watch it, don’t miss it, I may never speak to you again if you insist upon not having seen it before you die now that you know it’s of utmost importance that you do.

Long recommendation: This movie is truly amazing. The easiest observation I can make about this movie is that there are no men in it. At all. Supposedly, even the animals in it are all female, but I haven’t scrutinized it enough to verify. The movie is centered around the relationship of a woman (played by Norma Shearer) and her husband. The other main characters (except Joan Crawford’s) advise, react to, and exacerbate Shearer’s problems. The one who stands out the most in this movie is Rosalind Russell. She’s spot-on perfect in her portrayal of Sylvia.

My purpose in these recommendations is not to tell you the story at all, so that you can be as in the dark as possible about what you’re going to watch. It is my goal to have you trust that when I say you need to see a movie, you see the movie. And I don’t write about movies I don’t like, unless it relates to the movie I’m recommending. So if you don’t see a movie mentioned, I either haven’t seen it yet, didn’t like it, or haven’t had a chance to write about it.

That said, I will now say some negative things about movies. It has long been my opinion that the reason people remake a movie is because someone thinks they can do a better job with it. “The Women” was remade twice after this version. In1956, a rather painful musical called “The Opposite Sex” was made and not only did it include stupid songs, they went ahead and put men in it. This was neither better nor anywhere near as good as the original. “The Women” was remade once again in 2008 to the critics’ resounding cheers of “meh”. Clearly it would have been better if they had just re-released the original. There is not much that is old-fashioned about this movie, it’s just that the actors aren’t current stars and the film is in black and white, so obviously nobody wants to see it now. At least that’s what modern Hollywood thinks.

So watch this. You will not be sad.


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