Satire is the forte of Oscar winning director Billy Wilder (Some Like It Hot, Ocean’s Eleven) and he takes on the corporate world in this film. Writer/director Wilder and actor Jack Lemmon have done some of their best work when they work together and this film really illustrates that.
C.C. “Bud” Baxter (Jack Lemmon – Grumpy Old Men, Glengarry Glen Ross) believes he has discovered the way to get ahead quickly at work. He starts loaning out his apartment to his bosses, so they can have a place to alone with their mistresses. Once he starts doing this many an unmerited promotion comes his way. Everything is going swimmingly until he lends out his place to the biggest boss, J.D. Sheldrake (Fred MacMurray – The Shaggy Dog, The Caine Mutiny), and his girlfriend, Fran Kubelik (Shirley MacLaine – Guarding Tess, Terms of Endearment). It turns out that Fran is the girl of Bud’s dreams and this complicates matters between he and his boss. Bud finds himself having to make the choice between career and love.
In an example of how a story does not have to be a complex one to be intelligent, director/writer Billy Wilder touches upon the subjects of capitalism, corporate America, the morality of affairs, and what we see as success in his bitingly funny film. The humour is dark, but still accessible. It contains all the things that Wilder films usually do, such as good performances and witty dialogue. Billy Wilder certainly brings out the best in Jack Lemmon, that’s for sure. For all these reasons and more, the prestigious American Film Institute named The Apartment to its important Top 100 Films list. A must watch for film fans.
-Inside the Apartment Documentary
-Magic Time: The Art of Jack Lemmon
-Preview for Dances With Wolves