Thursday, 27 October 2011
The Apartment 
A few years back I’d seen a movie called Life in a Metro where one of the segments, as I’d found out, was “inspired” from The Apartment. Though I’d been wanting to watch this Billy Wilder classic since then, somehow I managed to do so only recently. Widely regarded among Wilder’s best works, this offbeat and bittersweet romantic comedy managed to bring smiles to my face despite, in essence, being a tragedy for most parts. C.C. Baxter (Jack Lemmon) is a desk clerk at a huge insurance corporation, rising through the ranks at a brisk pace thanks to his willingness to loan out his apartment to his philandering superiors. This information soon reaches the ears of his slimy married boss (Fred MacMurray) and he too muscles his way into the bandwagon – the only catch being the girl the latter intends to be along with in his apartment is the cute and gullible elevator girl (Shirley MacLaine) Baxter has fallen in love with. Though filled with enough humour and wit to keep one laughing, its cynical and bleak depiction of high-flying corporate life, culture and mores, as also human loneliness and dearth of human values amidst the urban jungle, are impossible to ignore. And yes, neither can the inherent melancholia can be avoided. The movie boasts of terrific dialogues and a host a memorable moments, and not to forget, great performances by both Lemmon and MacLaine.
Director: Billy Wilder
Genre: Urban Drama/Romantic Comedy