Some people take, some people get took. And they know they’re getting took and there’s nothing they can do about it.
The other night I woke up alone once again (what does this say about my future?), and suddenly I had a weird urge to watch The Apartment. I had seen it only once before, but I knew that it was already one of my favorite movies.
The Apartment starts off with C.C. Baxter, played by the charming Jack Lemmon, introducing himself as an employee of a low position in an insurance company in New York City. Although he was a hard worker, what allowed him to rise up the company was lending his apartment to executives to use for their affairs.
In the beginning, the film can be seen as a testimony to the callousness of corporations and the toll it takes on those with hearts, but as it progresses, it also became about the good that exists in the most sordid places. This ‘good’ took the form in the ever endearing Jack Lemmon. Every smile, every shrug, every quirk just wins you over. Shirley MacLaine plays Miss Kubelik, the damsel in distress of the story. Her portrayal of a disconsolate romantic in desperate need of saving calls to you and tugs at your heartstrings in every way. Fred MacMurray gives a wonderfully despicable performance as the main antagonist of the story. The fantastic script gave so much life to the characters; it was almost as if you knew them.
The environment that Billy Wilder created in this movie is so intimate, it was easy to be so engrossed in the characters’ lives. Empathy seems like an understatement of how I feel towards Mr. Baxter and Miss Kubelik because it’s almost as if I was stuck right in the middle of the movie being hurt the same way. The almost flawless mix of humor and drama brought the right amount of sentimentality, allowing me to fall in love completely with this movie. What I love most about it is the compassion that spills over the screen and into my heart, bringing it some much needed warmth and comfort. Suddenly, a lonely night doesn’t seem so lonely anymore.