The War Between Men and Women

Whereas the title makes it sound like it might be an action film it is actually a rather broad comedy about the battle between the sexes. The regular live action film stuff is accentuated by some animated sequences based on the artwork of James Thurber. Clever, fun and quick witted.

Cartoonist Peter Wilson (Jack Lemmon – Some Like it Hot, Grumpy Old Men) is a determined bachelor. To say that he has avoided marriage like the plague would be an understatement.  Even his career is based on his general distrust and dislike of women.  Peter is a cartoonist/novelist who draws cartoons that are less than flattering about women.  As they say, though, life can change greatly in just one moment.

At one of his visits to the optometrist (Peter has had a vision problems since he was young though he is still rather in denial that he might lose his sight) Peter literally bumps into a woman named Theresa (Barbara Harris – Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Grosse Pointe Blank).  They both are temporarily blind and as such have to spend some time in the waiting room.  They do not hit it off.  Actually, it is quite the opposite. They fight like cat and dog.

Cupid has plans for them and when they run into each other again though the fighting continues sparks also fly.  After a first date in which they spend the night together it is obvious to everyone except themselves that they are destined to be together.  Despite all the curveballs thrown at them by Theresa’s three children, her ex-husband Stephen (Jason Robards – Magnolia, All the President’s Men) and Peter’s loss of sight.  Will these two opposites manage to live happily after after?

This is one of those films you might flip by late at night and end up watching.  Most of the enjoyment will come courtesy of its quirkiness and Jack Lemmon.  Actor Jack Lemmon has always had a soft spot in my heart.  He is one of those strong actors who manages to get comedy right.  While this is most certainly not one of his best films it is still an entertaining watch.

While there are several children in this film it isn’t one appropriate for them.  First of all, they will not find it interesting at all and second, it is filled with “adult” situations and subjects.  That being said the comedy-drama does do the aforementioned adult things well.  As well it tries to put a different spin through the use of absurdist humour on the age old battle of the sexes.

Rarely is this type of romantic comedy made today.  Filled with witty dialogue and strong acting, The War Between Men and Women will not have you and your significant other battling over whether to watch it or not.

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