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The Women [VHS]
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Product Description

George Cukor, Hollywood's legendary "woman's director," had his hands full with the all-female cast of this 1939 film adaptation of the Clare Boothe play. The story finds a group of catty, competitive friends destroying reputations at social gatherings. The dialogue sparkles, Joan Crawford's performance as a husband stealer is still a classic, the film looks wonderful in Cukor's hands, and the Technicolor fashion-show scene is a one-of-a-kind Hollywood experience. --Tom Keogh

Customer Reviews:

  • a classic in every sense of the word
    My mother introduced me to this film when I was a grown woman myself. We sat there in her living room reveling in this wholly woman's experience. This is not a "chick-flick." It's a fully-realized expresssion of women's lives and circumstances. And what a revelation that, back then, a film was made without so much as a man's voice! Amazing....more info
  • Cyrstal does it better
    Besides perhaps "Mildred Pierce," "The Women" is absolutely Joan's most famous and much-loved classic film. I really love this movie because it's so well put together, all of the performances are tops and the story is second to none. As you may know already, in this film, Joan plays man-eater, Crystal Allen. Crystal will stop at nothing to sink her claws into Mr. Stephen Haines. And of course it doesn't matter to her that he's a presumably happily married man to everyone's favorite sweetheart, Mary, otherwise known as Mrs. Stephen Haines.

    My favorite clips from this movie are probably your favorites as well. I love the scene with Joan in the bathtub on the phone (they didn't have cordless phones back then so it behooves the imagination, where exactly did she stick the cord?) I love the fashion show and the part with Crystal being confronted by holier-than-thou Mary.

    When Joan had a hit, she often loved to make 2 or 3 more movies with very similar plots because she didn't want to disappoint her public. A couple of years after filming "The Women," Joan made a similar movie, "When Ladies Meet." The plot is very similar, but the script and and overall performances were nowhere near as sensational as in this.

    Even during Hollywood's Golden Age this film still stands out. The movie almost has an operatic feel to it because it's almost like a musical. All of the lines are almost magical or even poetic.

    After 75 years, Joan can still heat up the screen with any number of her classic motion pictures! Like Exile said: she's a miracle, a site to see! ...more info
  • Manhattan Matrons
    Put screen divas Rosalind Russell, Norma Shearer and Joan Crawford on a big budget set and watch them outdo one another. They all rise to the occasion and give among their half dozen personal bests of their careers in this legendary "all women" film.

    Claire Boothe Luce wrote the play in the 20s and it was a hit, although it almost missed out being produced because the author insisted that all of the sets and especially the clothes be the sine qua non--ka ching, ka ching. The same holds true for the film, adapted for the screen by Anita Loos, which even has an Adrian fashion show in Technicolor (but WHO wore those cumbersome clothes in real life?).

    The sets are places where Manhattan Matrons might be found, elegant department and dress stores, one another's bridge tables, trips to Bermuda, dude ranches, limited edition trains, Elizabeth Arden's and smart nightspots. All very well rendered in this outstanding production.

    Supporting cast members include a caterwauling Marjorie Main, sultry Paulette Goddard, the doe eyed Joan Fontaine, charming little Virginia Weidler and Mary Boland as Flora, Countess DeLave, the much married marriage mill heiress.

    The break up of Shearer's marriage is told with tenderness, and the viewers long for her to take her mother's advice. But then we would miss out on the changing room confrontation between Shearer and Crawford (the tension was real), the bubble bath disclosures and the nightclub powder room denouement.

    This is one of the greats.
    ...more info
  • Great movie1
    This is an excellent addition to any collection of classics. The director cleverly stuck with the theme in the play and avoided any men appearing the film. None appear even for a split second!...more info
  • If I could give this movie six stars...
    I would! What can be said about "The Women" that hasn't already been said? The one-liners come zinging out of the screen so fast that you find yourself rewinding while you think, "Oh no, she didn't say that!"

    Some of my favorites include:
    "And spend the afternoon with Edith Potter? I'd rather have the itch!"
    "He's a Borgia! An absolute Borgia!"
    "It's wrong - shockingly wrong!"

    I guess there are a couple things here and there which could be better - for one thing, this was the age when nobody could write for children. And that "little Hanes brat" moaning "Mother darling... Daddy dearest" really needs to be put out of her misery.

    Paulette Goddard's timing is often clunky, and she has trouble with that Hollywood-American-British accent, but really, everyone else is spot on....more info
  • Women of the World
    This movie was fun to watch. It is the only movie I have ever seen that starred only women. It is indeed an indictment of social status among women that still holds to this day. The transfer from film to DVD was excellent and the fashion parade section in Technicolor was amazing. I can heartily recommend this film for a fun night of viewing.

    ...more info
  • I love this movie
    This movie is one of my all time favorites! The storyline is timeless, no matter how
    long ago it was created. I find myself looking at the fashions and thought, " Wow The Women are a glamorous bunch....more info
  • Exact Product! Great Price!
    Exactly what I wanted on this very hard to find product! Plus, it was an excellent price!!...more info
  • title
    delivery was surprisingly fast and movie in good condition. this version is, undoubtedly, much more entertaining than the recent re-make of the movie. ...more info
  • The original "The Women" surpasses remake
    I am glad to have seen this version of "The Women," which arrived in excellent condition....more info
  • The Women
    Great movie! I highly recommend renting it if you enjoy classics or if you are simply looking for a highly entertaining movie to watch. If you enjoyed the current release, you'll love the original version of "The Women" even better....more info
  • What Every Bride Should Watch
    Steel Magnolias of the 1939? This dynamite film is "all about men." But guess what, there isn't a single man in it! And you won't miss them. Even though there's nary a male, the film is all about pursuing and keeping men. It's also about sage advice from Mother, a certain shade of nail varnish, and a new perfume called "Spring Rain." You've got ringside seats to see the fight of the century: in one corner the "ladies who lunch" and in the other corner, the challenger, women who work for a living. With clothes to die for, a technicolor fashion show, and frequent glimpses of Miss Shearer's huge ring, this is better than a sale at Bergdorfs. The women without a male meal ticket are on the prowl. Starring doe-eyed Norma Shearer, leopard-lipped Joan Crawford and spaghetti-spined Rosalind Russell, "The Women" is an Anita Loos screenplay based on the play by Clare Booth Luce. Directed by George Cukor. Give it as bridesmaid gifts, include it in every trousseau. Buy it and invite your girlfriends over for a slumber party. ...more info
  • A True Classic
    While the story line may not have been to my taste, the acting in this movie is wonderful. The women are all interesting and well cast. The movie held my attention from beginning to end. I've seen it on TV a couple of times over the years and I'm sure will watch it again.

    The one thing that always confuses me is if Norma Shearer's character was so wonderful, why did her husband stray? If he was that weak, why did she want him back? Maybe things like this just happen and there isn't always a logical explanation, but it wasn't realistic to me. Once he left her, she should have gone and never looked back.

    The more I see some of these older movies, the more I love them mostly because they were so well directed and acted. What some of these movies show is that a movie can have adult themes without being completely vulgar and juvenile. I may not always appreciate every nuance but in comparison to movies today, there is some magic there. ...more info
  • One of my favorites
    The dialogue in this flim is still fresh, the actors were the creme the creme of Hollywood. One of my favorite quotes is by Paulette Goddard, "Any ladle that dishes out some gravy is sweet". Everyone in the film is gone now, but they left an impression that will last a long long time....more info
  • The Women
    This is one of the all-time great showcases for the top actresses of the 1930s. It's written by Claire Booth Luce, and the crackling dialogue & energetic plot are maximized by the direction of George Cukor. Such a good movie....more info
  • "There is a name for you ladies, but it isn't used in high society... outside of a kennel..."
    Ignore myths of sisterhood. Women can be nasty, catty, devious, gossipy and gleeful -- especially about each other. So expect lots of that in "The Women," a screwball comedy about divorce, remarriage, affairs and lots and lots of inner feuding. It's a practically perfect girls' movie.

    The uppermost ladies of Manhattan lunch, spa, shop and especially gossip together. So when Mary Haines' (Norma Shearer) hubby takes a perfume-counter mistress Crystal (Joan Crawford), the other women try to keep it from her. But Mary finds out, and after confronting her husband with his infidelity, she demands a divorce -- and so it's off to Reno with her goody-two-shoes pal Peggy (Joan Fontaine).

    She spends the next few weeks at a ranch with other soon-to-be-divorced women, including her neurotic cousin, a much-divorced countess and a vixen. And though Mary still loves her husband, he feels obligated to marry Crystal. But then Mary's daughter reveals some juicy new information about Crystal -- and Mary's pals band together to help her set things right.

    "The Women" is an all-star cast, with all women. Not a man to be seen or even heard (although I can't vouch for the animals) -- even the kids are all girls. This allows the attention to remain on The Women, whether it's the naive girls, kindly matrons or the catty hens.

    The original play was by Clare Boothe Luce, but Anita Loos gives it her own witty spin. And Loos -- the original chick-litter -- knew how to spin witty, sparking dialogue without breaking a sweat ("She's got those eyes that run up and down a man like a searchlight!").

    The plot moves at a fast pace, with the occasional lull, where we get some barbed dialogue about marriage and infidelity. Few movies can handle catfights in a really funny manner (Sylvia biting Miriam on the leg), throw in some insights about men and women's relationships, a dash of romance, revenge, and a climactic battle that involves a broom closet.

    Shearer, Paulette Goddard and Mary Boland are all great as women hardened and strengthened by having their guy stolen; Rosalind Russell is hilarious as Shearer's immature, weirdly-dressed cousin, and Joan Crawford is as slimy and vicious as her role demands. The one dark spot is Virginia Weidler, who basically has to simper and whimper -- sadly, because she was delightful in "Philadelphia Story."

    "The Women" prove that oftentimes, the female of the species is more deadly -- and more resourceful -- than the male. Hilarious, witty and wonderfully catty....more info
  • dish the dirt with flair
    Being a huge fan of the stage play by the same name,the movie version is equal in it's fun and wit! If for nothing else, the fashion show (in color in a black and white film)is worth the price of this DVD! Ms. Russell and Ms Crawford are at their best as well as the rest of the cast. At times the script seems hokey and dated, but that adds to the charm and period in which this film was made.
    This is a must have for anyone who has close friends that they love and hate at the same time!!! This is camp at it's best without being campy....more info
  • The Women 1939
    *Be Careful what you say in private* . It Could become a movie . Some Gossip overhead by Clara Boothe Luce (1903-1987) in a nightclub powder room inspired her Broadwayhit that's wittily adapted for the screen in THE WOMAN . George Cukor (1899-1983) directs an all-female cast in this catty tale of battling and honding that paints its claws *Jungle Red* and shreds the excesses of pampered Park Avenue princesses. Joan Crawford (1905-1977) , Rossalind Russell (1907-1976) , Joan Fontaine (1917 - ), Mary Boland (1880-1965) , and Paulette Goddard (1910-1990) are among the array of husband snatchers , snitches and lovelorn ladies . Norma Shearer (1902-1983) is jilted Mary Haines ( birth unknown), who ultimately learns to claw without ruining her manicure . All the glamming and slamming comes with a shimmery bauble: a fashion-show sequence in eye-popping Technicolor . Many Features no one seen before . High Quality transfer . Recommemded . ...more info
  • Incredible Classic
    If you need a good laugh and a good cry this is one of those movie classics to enjoy. It's a heart warming film that will leave you inspired to grow your nails jungle red!...more info
  • The Women DVD
    I bought this book for my sister, who has seen the movie on TCM many times. The story holds up well for its age and it's a delightful film. All the characters are good, the dialogue is crisp and snappy, and the performances are first-rate.

    This DVD is a must-have for a movie library of great films....more info
  • These Women Rock!
    This film is a classic!!
    The writing, the acting, the direction are all superb!
    And of course the fashion show seen is one of the best in any movie - modern designer scould laern a thing or two!!!!!
    L'amour, l'amour toujous l'amour!...more info
  • Sophisticated cat-fught at it's best
    For almost 60 years, "The Women" has proven to be a camp classic of high society at its worst. The claws come out (Jungle Red) and the backbiting never stops. Holywood has seldom given us banter that is this quick or this biting....more info
  • The Women
    This is my all time favorite! Comedy, angst, timely and really corny! Love it!...more info
  • Fantastic
    The best, you cant compare this to the new version.
    THIS is the version to go with.
    Its old, but its still the best, and funniest version.
    Pure Classic....more info
  • A Classic Must See!
    This is a great DVD to own for anyone who is a fan of movies of this era. The performances are over the top, the dialogue is sheer camp and the costumes, well, just say that any "drag queen" would love hanging them in his/her closet! What a hoot! The add-ons are just as entertaining as the movie itself. If you are in the mood for a good laugh while being thoroughly entertained, purchase this DVD, invite a few friends over and make a party of it!...more info
  • Simply the Best!
    Fast pace, witty - keeps you guessing what will they say ... what will they do next! There isn't a "slow" second in the film. It challenges you to be alert and pay attention - and the award for your effort is bountiful. Rosalind Russell is her beautiful and amazing self. The last couple lines of the film made me stand up and applaud - again. After seeing this movie, you must see Auntie Mame!...more info
  • Great Movie
    This one of my favorite movies but I'll leave the movie review to the critics. The DVD arrived before the promised delivery date (not at all unusual for Amazon!) and is in perfect shape.
    The closed caption is very helpful to me as I have a slight hearing loss and the women talk fast. Now I don't miss a single hilarious line--and there are lots of them....more info
  • A Great Classic Film From George Cukor
    "The Women" will go down in movie history as the quentiessential ladies film. The central character, Mary Haines (Norma Shearer), is the one who is enduring her share of pain when learning of her husband's affair with a sneaky department store clerk (MGM studio rival Joan Crawford). With Rosalind Russell, Paulette Goddard, Lucile Watson, Marjorie Main and other cast members providing noted performances, "The Women" was directed with skill and strong, entertainment quality by the legendary George Cukor, who took the screenplay from the Clare Boothe Luce Broadway comedy that ran for a then-record 666 performances. And, yes, who can forget the technicolor fashion scene with the high fashions of 1939 flashing before your eyes? This is a comedy for the ages. To today's moviegoers, Norma Shearer is best remembered for "The Women" as opposed to her other films such as "Marie Antoinette," "The Divorcee" (her only Oscar-winner), "A Free Soul," to name a few. This marked Shearer's last "great film" appearance, although she would do two more MGM films before leaving the screen in 1942. As Mary, she nurtures a daughter, gets advice from her mother, and uses "Jungle Red" to later get back the man of her life from Crawford. The fight scene between Russell and Goddard was hilarious to the hilt as the ladies settle down on a western ranch away from New York City. And Mary Boland's countess was interesting with her emphasis on la'mour, la'mour, la'mour (love in French).

    With an all-female cast, "The Women" shows bonding, feuding, and glamour in one, golden package. A must-see for all....more info
  • terrific service
    I ordered a copy of The Women, the old movie made in the 1930's, and it arrived in just a few days. The price was good, as was the service. I have not yet viewed the movie, as I am waiting for my company to arrive the end of this month.I am certain it will be fine. I love this movie. A group of friends said the new version is terrible, so I am having them in to watch this next month, so they can enjoy this lovely old movie, too.
    I was named after Norma Shearer, in 1930.
    Thank you for your usual fine prompt service.
    Norma Coffin...more info
  • Excelent and top Quality copy
    Funny and entertaining comedy,and for a film made 69 years ago the copy is of so good quality it look it was film recently....more info
  • DVD: The Women (1939)
    Excellent movie. It is a must see movie that was way ahead of its time. Although the movie is more than 65 years old, it has meaning today because it's about girlfriends. The all star cast includes Norma Shearer, Joan Crawford, Rosalind Russell and no men. What a hoot!...more info
  • A true gem!
    The first time I saw this movie I fell in love with it! I highly recommend it to all you gals out there! Joan Crawford definitely puts on a very good performance herself- and in the end.. well I won't spoil it for you- just get your girlfriends together-pop some popcorn and other snacks and laugh, cry, and sigh-"they don't make movies like this anymore!"...more info
  • Many women with much to say
    Great movie, crisp DVD transfer, tons of extras (my favorite is the audio-only film scoring sessions, which when played together essentially equal a comprehensive soundtrack album of the film ). The conceit of "The Women" is that it's just that: women. There are no male actors, and male characters (those dastardly husbands) are only talked about, or "appear" just offstage.

    As a guy, I particularly enjoyed Norma Shearer's mother character, who chided her daughter for being too angry about her husband's philandering. "Boys will be boys," she said. "How can you think about leaving your husband and taking from him the best piece of protection he has while seeing that conniving wench: his legal marriage?" Had to laugh at that, the mom making her daughter feel guilty for wanting to leave her cheating husband. Another highlight: a particularly radiant Paulette Goddard, who plays one of Norma Shearer's many female friends.

    At 133 minutes, the movie is a bit long for its subject matter (wives complaining about their husbands, even in a frothy comedy, is good for about an hour and forty-five minutes tops, in my book), but the length isn't a fatal flaw, especially on DVD when you can take a break whenever you want. In the end, this is a fine film from Hollywood's golden era, and well worth your time....more info
  • One of the Best
    First, ignore any of the reviews with a 1, 2,or 3 star (and Jeff'sdate needs to get an identity check-up).
    This movie is one of the best about women there is and the updated one that just came out doesn't hold a candle to it.
    It is NOT against women in anyway. In fact, it celebrates women and how varied we are as a group--and the dumb things WE do for/about/to get a man. Other things about this film--everything, including the animals are female. Take a close look at the art in the film, it is female. There is over $5 million in jewels (by today's prices) in the film.
    And if any of you open up to say that you don't talk about other women-even your friends in this manner--you are so not telling the truth. Even my boyfriend, who loves this movie, has brought it to my attention that several of the characters remind him of some of my friends.
    So I had my friends over for an evening picnic and movie and this was the movie I showed. They all have copies of it now. Just because it was produced in the 1930's doesn't mean women have changed ALL that much when it comes to fashion, jewels, and men! ...more info
  • Original a MUST see.
    Def a must see. First saw the Meg Ryan remake, then the play based on the original and then this original movie version, you have to see it, was a great movie!...more info
  • The Mid-20th Century Rules of Female Survival Deftly Handled by a Game Cast
    The constant verbal jousting in this 1939 classic has layers of vitriolic wit and honest insight thanks to the sharp script penned by Anita Loos and Jane Murfin from Clare Booth Luce's legendary 1936 females-only Broadway hit. Crisply directed by George Cukor who is completely in his milieu here, the movie is really a mid-20th century survivor's guide for wealthy, insulated women seeking comfort and security in a world where they are defined solely by their husbands. While it is still an accomplished film in many respects, the 133-minute running time feels overly long as the mile-a-minute catty comments grow wearisome despite the deftness of their delivery by an estimable ensemble cast.

    The plot is straightforward. Socialite Mary Haines is a loving wife and mother whose decade-long marriage produces a wandering eye in her off-screen husband Stephen. Once he takes up with a predatory perfume salesgirl named Crystal Allen, Mary takes the train west to Reno for a divorce at which point Stephen and Crystal marry. But Mary is determined to win him back, as she knows full well that Crystal will eventually tire of Stephen and move on to greener pastures. It all ends in a bracing series of confrontations in what looks to be the world's largest powder room. What makes this story richer than the outline of events is the multi-voiced flow of gossip and advice pummeling Mary from her immediate social circle, in particular, her vituperative cousin and apparent best friend Sylvia Fowler.

    The three leads are impeccably cast. As the virtuous Mary, Norma Shearer is saddled with the dullest part since she has to react to the shenanigans circling her. However, she radiates her trademark class and a genuine sense of warmth. Joan Crawford was born to play the rapacious Crystal as she dynamically conveys the cynicism of her character's motives. Even though the main conflict is between Mary and Crystal, classic scene-stealer Rosalind Russell makes Sylvia a perfectly venal yet oddly endearing character with her wacky outfits and slapstick pratfalls. Over 130 women surround this trio, including a gallery of memorable characters embodied by an impressive bevy of studio-era actresses from Mary Boland's over-the-top Countess DeLave to a young pre-Hitchcock Joan Fontaine as irritatingly demure Peggy to Paulette Goddard's no-nonsense Miriam to Lucile Watson as Mary's worldly wise mother to Marjorie Main as the loud Reno dude ranch operator.

    Even with the inclusion of a knockdown catfight between Russell and Goddard, the film gets overly dramatic at times, highlighting Shearer's penchant for grand lady mannerisms, and there is a completely excisable ten-minute fashion show shot in early Technicolor to show off Adrian's extravagant costume designs. Special mention should be given to Cedric Gibbons' luxuriant art direction and Edwin Willis' set designs. The 2005 DVD has two vintage shorts of marginal interest - "Hollywood: Style Center of the World" about Adrian's fashion influence on everyday wear by American women, and "From the Ends of the Earth: Another Romance of Celluloid" about the use of textile imports in studio films. There is also a trailer for the film as well as one for the unnecessary 1956 musical remake, "The Opposite Sex". Completely disposable is an alternate black-and-white version of the fashion show and over forty minutes of original score and source music cues....more info
  • Ultimate chick flick
    Want sparkling dialogue? Know what women talk about? Watch this ultimate chick flick of cattiness and
    divorce....more info