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THE ODD COUPLE: The Movie,
By A Customer
This review is from: Odd Couple, the 68 (VHS Tape)
Neil Simon's THE ODD COUPLE has been a hit in three different incarnations. First, in 1965, there was the Broadway production starring Art Carney and Walter Matthau as Felix Unger and Oscar Madison. The play was filmed in 1968 with Matthau and Jack Lemmon, then turned into the TV series featuring Tony Randall and Jack Klugman. Though the movie opens up the one-set original to include scenes in restaurants, streets, a motel, a ballpark, and a bowling alley, the sequences set in Oscar's Riverside Drive apartment form the heart of the play; director Gene Saks keeps these intact for the movie. Matthau's deadpan Oscar is the perfect foil for Lemmon's melancholy yet funny Felix. The scenes involving the two are alternately riotous - as when Oscar becomes fed up with Felix's constant fussing - and touching - as when Felix cries in front of the Pigeon sisters, his and Oscar's dinner dates. John Fiedler shines as one of Oscar's four poker-playing buddies. THE ODD COUPLE, in whatever version, is ultimately a comedy about friendship enduring despite differences, and this theme is communicated superbly by the team of Lemmon, Matthau, and Saks.