Woman's World (1954)

Approved   |    |  Drama


Woman's World (1954) Poster

An executive plans to fill a high-ranking position by interviewing the candidates' wives.


7/10
898

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22 July 2002 | marcslope
What a Time Capsule
Slick, superficial CinemaScope stuff from Hollywood's early-'50s panic attack: How ya gonna keep 'em down at the flicks after they've seen TV? Fox tried to with big screens, splashy colors, and half a dozen or so stars crammed into one entertaining soap-opera premise. There's no cinema-making genius going on here, but the movie is overwhelmingly entertaining, both for its look and its morality. A consumerist's paradise, it's so stuffed with cars and gowns and doodads that you're seized with an overwhelming urge to go shopping after you've seen it. (The cars, in particular, are '50s-futurists designs from Ford/Lincoln/Mercury, and they're knockouts.) And the morality is so utterly of its time: The onscreen drinking and smoking are nonstop, the gender premises (men seek power, women seek men) are unquestioned, and the subtext is clearly that money and power are fine, but holding on to your man is what really counts. And to do that, you'd better learn to be a dear little klutzy wifey like June Allyson instead of a calculating harlot like Arlene Dahl. Of the women, Allyson's wife-waif act becomes monotonous, and while Dahl is luscious to look at and seems to be in on the joke of how one-note her character is, she's not really much of an actress. So Bacall, her crisp-sophisticate act honed to a fine sharpness, comes off best by default. The men are all OK, but New York is the real star.

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