If you haven’t been married for a dozen years or more, you may want to move on … otherwise, I think you’ll find this film to be an insightful look at marriage told in a nonlinear way as a road picture (the couple is always traveling) by director-producer Stanley Donen and featuring Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney. This (comedy, romance) drama is a series of vignettes, brilliantly edited together non-sequentially, which detail the twelve year relationship between Mark and Joanna Wallace including: their beginning (e.g. how they met & fell in love; he was a drifting architect taking photographs of the architecture in France while she was traveling with a choral group led by Jacqueline Bisset’s character), their honeymoon road-trip across Europe with another couple – William Daniels plays an efficiency expert who married Mark’s first love from his days at the University of Chicago in America; this couple has a precocious six year old that they allow to control them – the Wallace’s first two years of marital bliss, a little of their child rearing years – he’s overworked and struggling to make a name for himself (yet, while on the road, he has an occasional one night stand), employed by a demanding boss named Maurice, while she’s a near single mother – then his career successful but their disillusioning years as a ‘mature’ married couple during which (neglected) Joanna falls in love with (being in love &) Maurice’s ‘serious’ French brother-in-law and briefly leaves Mark, and their ultimate reconciliation and acceptance of who they are (“bitch” and “bastard”) and what they are together. Frederic Raphael (Darling (1965)) earned his second and last Academy Award nomination for his Original Story and Screenplay, Written Directly for the Screen. —Classicfilmguide.com
Stanley Donen (born April 13, 1924) is an American film director and choreographer hailed by David Quinlan as “the King of the Hollywood musicals”. His most famous work is Singin’ in the Rain (1952), which he co-directed with Gene Kelly.
Donen started at Metro Goldwyn Mayer as a choreographer and dancer in Best Foot Forward (1943) with Lucille Ball. Donen appeared with Kelly in Cover Girl (1944) for Columbia Pictures, for which Donen also directed a sequence of Kelly dancing with his double on a darkened Manhattan street. His first chance to direct an entire movie was an adaptation of the Comden and Green musical about sailors on leave in New York City, On the Town (1949), with some songs by Leonard Bernstein, which Donen co-directed with Gene Kelly. This was the first movie musical to be filmed on location.
With Kelly again, Donen co-directed Singin’ in the Rain (1952) and by himself directed such classics as Royal Wedding (1951), where Donen directed Fred Astaire dancing… read more