The Apartment

1960

Action / Comedy / Drama / Romance

86
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 94% · 108 reviews
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 94% · 25K ratings
IMDb Rating 8.3/10 10 198657 198.7K

Director

Top cast

Shirley MacLaine as Fran Kubelik
Jack Lemmon as C.C. Baxter
Joan Shawlee as Sylvia
Ray Walston as Joe Dobisch
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU 2160p.BLU.x265
911.25 MB
1280*548
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
2 hr 5 min
Seeds 22
1.9 GB
1904*816
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
2 hr 5 min
Seeds 77
5.81 GB
3840*1634
English 5.1
NR
23.976 fps
2 hr 5 min
Seeds 13

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by markdroulston 9 / 10

They don't make 'em like this anymore

Billy Wilder's The Apartment was one of a huge list of movies that are considered classics which I haven't seen, and indeed knew very little about (other than the level of admiration which many people have for it). Having a vague knowledge of the stars of the film (Jack Lemmon, Shirley MacLaine), for one reason or another I was expecting a light-hearted comedy filled with innuendo and witty banter, a tradition of filmmaking that was common around the period when this film was released. Thankfully I wasn't disappointed, as these elements are all in play in The Apartment, but what really thrilled and surprised me was the much more serious subject matter that the film deals with. To say this is simply a comedy is completely false, as it's a somewhat dark and daring study of the nature of love and infidelity, and the stunning performances and filmmaking on display had me enthralled from the first frame.

The film certainly begins as a comedy. C.C. Baxter (Lemmon) is a young bachelor trying to ascend the corporate ladder by allowing a group of his superiors to use his apartment for their extra-marital liaisons. After he falls for charismatic elevator attendant Fran (MacLaine), who is engaged in an illicit relationship with Mr. Sheldrake, the married head of the company, Baxter tries to free himself from the demands of his bosses, with hilarious results. While this is certainly risqué subject matter (for 1960), the film takes an unexpectedly sombre turn when Fran makes a suicide attempt in the apartment after learning the truth behind Sheldrake's motives. What follows is a touching, and at times heart-wrenching flowering of Baxter and Fran's relationship, and if the ending is a little predictable, the journey getting there is really something wonderful.

The Apartment features an excellent selection of fully-formed support characters, but the film really belongs to Lemmon and MacLaine. Lemmon's reputation as cinema's greatest everyman is really on show here, and it's impossible not to root for him and sympathise with his plight. Playing Baxter as a charming yet awkward underdog, his character is the embodiment of the 'nice guys finish last' maxim, and although some elements of his life may be a little shady to say the least, Lemmon is flawless. MacLaine is completely up to Lemmon's high standard as Fran, effortlessly making audiences fall in love with her just as Baxter has. She's just so damn cute that even when she's recovering from an overdose of sleeping pills, she exudes such a potent 'girl next door' allure that can't be avoided. Her chemistry with Lemmon is palpable, and when they inevitably end up together, it's one of those truly satisfying romantic moments seen all too rarely in modern cinema.

I'm not usually one to get nostalgic when it comes to film periods, but while I do have great fondness for many more recent romantic comedies, Hollywood really doesn't make movies like The Apartment any more. Wilder's screenplay (co-written with I.A.L. Diamond) is clever, witty and engaging, particularly in the subtle motifs and unique idiosyncrasies of all the characters, and the film is just so expertly crafted. I'm determined now to seek out more Wilder films, along with catching up on my Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine. I can't recommend The Apartment highly enough!

Reviewed by jdoan-4 9 / 10

A precise satire

Billy Wilder has made some tremendous satires. "Sunset Boulevard" is one of the greatest satires on film. "The Apartment", though not as cynical, is a very good one as well. I like that the satire is a backdrop for the main love story, and yet an integral part of it. The film shows just how much people are will to prostitute themselves in order to get what they want, whether that be a family or an executive office. Wilder handles some very serious and bawdy themes with a precise touch. This film could have easily turned into a wacky comedy of errors, but he is much to talented and sympathetic for that. He gives Baxter's character some sincere emotional depth. I could almost feel his loneliness and longing in many scenes. He is never really sure what he wants and how he can get it. He is a man searching for something, and he doesn't quite know it. Lemon plays this role to perfection. He doesn't go overboard. He gives the character the right amount of silliness and charm. McClaine is very strong. Her character is not stereotyped. She is a wounded soul that is looking for respite in the absolutely wrong place. I found her very charming and lovable. Some much of the film is in the wonderful cinematography. Wilder uses the widescreen to its fullest capability. The framing is so precise. You get a feeling of utter separation and distance. I really like the nearly infinite succession of desks in the office.

Reviewed by KatMiss 10 / 10

WILDER'S GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT

Billy Wilder's "The Apartment is his greatest accomplishment. It is his most successful melding of comedy and drama that he never quite pulled off again. I'm glad the Academy had enough good taste to award Wilder The Triple Crown: Best Picture/Director/Screenplay. But they still had enough bad taste to deny Jack Lemmon a Best Actor award, Shirley MacLaine a Best Actress award and Fred MacMurray a nomination and award.

The plot this time: C.C. Baxter (Lemmon; in case you're wondering: "C for Calvin C for Clifford, but most people call me "Bud")lends out his apartment to executives for their extramarital trysts in the faint hope of a promotion. Eventually, his boss, Sheldrake (MacMurray, excellent in a rare straight role) finds out and wants the key for his own affairs. Meanwhile, Baxter has a crush on Miss Kubelik (MacLaine, in a strong performance)the elevator operator.

For those who accuse me of spoiling the whole movie: rest assured. This only covers the first 20 minutes or so of the 126 minute feature. Wilder has many twists and tricks up his sleeve and I'll leave you to discover what happens. What amazes me about "The Apartment" is that unlike most films, this isn't about the plot. It's a study in human nature and the mistakes they make. That is a strong trait of most Wilder films (including "Kiss Me, Stupid" and "The Fortune Cookie", both hilarious comedies with a hidden meaning)

Also the dialogue by Wilder and I.A.L. Diamond isn't just one-liners (although they are funny; especially when spoken by Lemmon and Ray Walston)There is real heartfelt sentiment here and it isn't the syrupy kind that makes my stomach churn (as in films like "Patch Adams") Wilder allows enough to make his points and then gets back to comedy.

The cinematography is fabulous too. Wilder's film (as most of his 60s films) is in widescreen Black and White (shot by Joseph LaShelle, in Panavision; one of the most unsung and unrecognized cinematographers in history, he was nominated but lost) It has a crisp,clean look and is one of the few widescreen films that actually make the viewer feel confined in a tight space.

"The Apartment" is a superior example of the "serious comedy", films that work as both comedy and drama. Sadly, many of today's filmmakers have lost touch with this genre. I can't help but feel that the freedoms granted today that weren't in the 1950s and 60s haven't been an advance. They've been holding us back. Smart characters have lost way to stupid and oversexed ones. That's a real shame and it's high time we go back to our roots.

**** out of 4 stars

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