Saturday, April 06, 2019

The Bigamist

1953, US, directed by Ida Lupino

An unusually frank film, for its time, with respect to social mores, focused on a salesman who is attempting to juggle two relationships, though the picture has to stretch credibility a little to accommodate this situation in a manner that keeps the central character sympathetic.While the film seems to start out as a justification for male misbehaviour, as the narrative unspools it becomes something a good deal more interesting, a discussion of how the standard boxes don't work for every situation, and where women, in particular, are likely to fall foul of social regulations that determine acceptable behaviour. The film is quite up front about this, engineering situations in which conversations about stifling convention are reasonably credible, while Lupino makes ample time for us to hear from the two women -- they're anything but subordinate to the story. It might make a good pairing with the slightly earlier That Brennan Girl.

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Boston, Massachusetts, United States