Found these lists (twelve total which I've compiled) a couple years back and they slowly became my bible for weird…
The War of the Roses
Once in a lifetime comes a motion picture that makes you feel like falling in love all over again. This is not that movie.
The Roses, Barbara and Oliver, live happily as a married couple. Then she starts to wonder what life would be like without Oliver, and likes what she sees. Both want to stay in the house, and so they begin a campaign to force each other to leave. In the middle of the fighting is D'Amato, the divorce lawyer. He gets to see how far both will go to get rid of the other, and boy do they go far.
Marriage isn't easy. Spending your life with someone is a charming notion, of course, and most of us will admit (in moments of vulnerability) that we aspire to make a singular, long-term connection with someone we love - that special 'other' - who promises to add warmth and security to our days and enrich our experience of living. Like good health, a meaningful relationship is a largely universal pursuit.
But then there's also an existential hopelessness to the idea of monogamy. As the years go by those little quirks and ticks that once struck us as adorable start to grate on the nerves. The 'other' becomes the 'familiar'... nauseatingly so, until we associate that person with little else beyond comfort…
Back in the eighties Kathleen Turner and Michael Douglas were a very sexy couple who had real chemistry when on screen together. They made two entertaining adventure films, Romancing The Stone and a sequel The Jewel Of The Nile along with this rather darker comedy with a jet black heart. Directed by Danny DeVito and focusing on the disintegration of a marriage, this has Turner and Douglas go to war with each other with comedic and tragic results.
When I divorced my first wife I was so anxious to get rid of the bitch I basically let her take me to the cleaners. She took the house, all of its contents, even my dog, and left me with my golf…
Much like how I watched The Mosquito Coast when I was a kid expecting it to be another of Harrison Ford’s action adventures, I’m sure I watched The War Of The Roses expecting it to be another Kathleen Turner / Michael Douglas collaboration that would be as much fun as Romancing The Stone or The Jewel Of The Nile. Aaaaand, it’s not quite, or certainly not in the way I would have been expecting.
Black comedies that are ultimately as dark as this is are not something that Hollywood generally has much success with. The War Of The Roses is a rare exception on many fronts. On top of being excellent, it was also…
Some films can lose a little of their initial impact over the years. The Danny DeVito directed The War of the Roses was one of those films that back in 1989 when it released was a cutting black comedy that reunited the trio of Douglas, Turner, and DeVito following the success of Romancing the Stone and the Jewel of the Nile.
DeVito plays a divorce attorney who recounts the tale of the most bitter divorce battle he ever handled in an effort to make his client think again. His story about his former colleague Tom (Michael Douglas) and his wife Barbara (Kathleen Turner) is pricelessly told with the almost perfect early relationship a picture of happiness. Time they say can…
Makes Gone Girl look relatively toothless (and even more unbalanced) by comparison. Simultaneously tragic and ridiculously funny, The War of the Roses is every bit as well-executed as its brilliant title would suggest. Not sure that the framing device is necessary, or really works, but it doesn't do or take away much, apart from providing a measure of optimism at the very end (which I should note feels false in one sense, but also earned).
Not a problem per se, but it almost seems that the film could have fleshed out the formative (good) years even more. As it is, once the relationship turns sour, it's evident that something has been lost, tragically so; but it seems that the…
[from a discussion on the Movie Nerd Discussion Group, 13 Jun 2005; ostensible topic is Mr. & Mrs. Smith but I spent much more time praising this film]
> Comparisons to Prizzi's Honor and War of the Roses have
> been bandied about quite often—most cogently by Miles,
> whose work at Nerve and especially Esquire has been
> intimidatingly first-rate [...]
You're too kind, sir. Unfortunately, I seem to have intimidated my editors at Esquire into cutting my column in half, starting with the September issue. (As is so often the case in this business, this reduction in word count was accompanied by a hefty raise in salary.) One page is apparently all the attention our readers can muster for any article not…
A classic guide to the couples planning on divorce, rather in what not to do. Hilarious at times, even after all these years it is enjoyable. And what do you learn from it? a) having a bigger car is better, b) watch your back and c) do not hang from a chandelier, ever!
Man, there was a 5 to 10 year span when Kathleen Turner was absolutely fabulous in everything she was in. She was strong, sexy, funny, and perfect for a black comedy like this one. Douglas is good, but Turner's performance is better.
Used to love this as a kid, likely for the slapstick aspects of it, though I hadn't seen it in about 25 years. Now it comes off as much more depressing and sad. Looks like it was almost all filmed in a studio.
"lol don't get married"- danny dorito
Very classic, very on-point story. Needs to be paced up a LOT, and the story-telling mechanism felt a little tired.
This film makes me want to stay single for the rest of my life...
The geographical midpoint along a straight line leading from Douglas Sirk to The Simpsons. If we're talking pH scale, the satire falls at 0—strong acid. No equivocations in this battle of the sexes: just a husband and wife, both acting as villains, getting as much pleasure out of hating each other as they ever got from love. Michael Douglas plays the breadwinning lawyer who transforms into a snarling weasel, while Kathleen Turner infuses enough venom into her comebacks and dirty looks for a whole colony of black widows. Danny DeVito not only directs but pops in and out as the chain-smoking narrator, framing this as a cautionary fairy tale. Extreme angles, uncomfortable close-ups, and split diopters turn the Roses' home into a garish caricature of material excess. (The d.p. was Stephen H. Burum, a frequent De Palma collaborator.) The War of the Roses makes me grateful my divorced parents were too poor to own anything nice enough to destroy.
Ez az a film, amitől garantáltan elmegy mindenki kedve a házasságtól. Fergeteges fekete komédia a nemek háborújáról.
Here is my list for the May 2016 Scavenger Hunt.
Max's original post here: letterboxd.com/moxleyox/list/scavenger-hunt-14-may-2016/”
DOUBLE CHALLENGE MAY MADNESS