The film is a disturbing adaptation of J.P. Miller's Playhouse 90 story. Joe Clay, (Lemmon) is a San Francisco public relations man who likes to hoist a few and have a good time. When he meets secretary Kirsten Arnesen (Lee Remick), who doesn't drink, he is taken be her, and after a short time they marry. After a few more months, Kirsten is able to put away as much liquor as her husband. As the years pass, Joe loses one job after another and his wife neglects their child until he begins to realize that both of them are alcoholics. soon the couple moves into her father's (Charles Bickford) nursery to dry out, but following a couple of weeks "on the wagon", they go on a total drinking binge. Joe nearly destroys a greenhouse in a fanatic search for a drink and ends up in hospital ward. Former alcoholic Jim Hungerford (Jack Klugman) tries to help them both...
Edwards offers an unflinching look at alcoholism. I remember seiing The Lost Weekend (also featuring an alcoholic) in film school, and being amazed, I felt the same way after I saw this movie. Lemmon and Remick are very good together.Read more ›
Lemmon and Remmick are compelling as is the fine supporting cast. This is a great movie to covey the message about the dangers of drinking to young people. As a side note, I attended high school and was quite freindly with one J. D. Miller's sons. Unfortunatly the lessons of the story were not learned by his offspring. Then again, that was almost 40 years ago. Maybe there's a happy ending in there somewhere.