IMDb > Adam's Rib (1949)
Adam's Rib
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Adam's Rib (1949) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

User Rating:
7.6/10   13,914 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
Ruth Gordon (screen play) and
Garson Kanin (screen play)
Contact:
View company contact information for Adam's Rib on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
18 November 1949 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
It Will Tickle Your Funny Bone ! See more »
Plot:
Domestic and professional tensions mount when a husband and wife work as opposing lawyers in a case involving a woman who shot her husband. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 1 win & 3 nominations See more »
NewsDesk:
(27 articles)
User Reviews:
The Best of Hepburn and Tracy See more (95 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Spencer Tracy ... Adam Bonner

Katharine Hepburn ... Amanda Bonner

Judy Holliday ... Doris Attinger

Tom Ewell ... Warren Attinger

David Wayne ... Kip Lurie

Jean Hagen ... Beryl Caighn
Hope Emerson ... Olympia La Pere
Eve March ... Grace
Clarence Kolb ... Judge Reiser
Emerson Treacy ... Jules Frikke
Polly Moran ... Mrs. McGrath

Will Wright ... Judge Marcasson
Elizabeth Flournoy ... Dr. Margaret Brodeigh
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Bonnie Bannon ... Woman in Courtroom (uncredited)
Charles Bastin ... Young District Attorney (uncredited)
Joseph E. Bernard ... Mr. Bonner - Adam's Father (uncredited)
Madge Blake ... Mrs. Bonner - Adam's Mother (uncredited)
Harris Brown ... Court Attendant (uncredited)

David Clarke ... Roy (uncredited)
Harry Cody ... Criminal Attorney (uncredited)
Dick Cogan ... Reporter (uncredited)
Paul Cramer ... Stenographer (uncredited)
Bert Davidson ... Subway Guard (uncredited)
Roger Davis ... Paul Hurlock (uncredited)
Janna DeLoos ... Mary - Maid (uncredited)
Sidney Dubin ... Bobby - Amanda's Assistant (uncredited)
Rex Evans ... Fat Man in Elevator (uncredited)
John Fell ... Adam's Assistant (uncredited)
Norman Field ... Courtroom Bailiff (uncredited)
Glen Gallagher ... Criminal Attorney (uncredited)
Mickey Golden ... Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
Danny Harvey ... Office Boy (uncredited)

Marvin Kaplan ... Court Stenographer (uncredited)
Kenner G. Kemp ... Man in Courtroom (uncredited)
Michael Kostrick ... Photographer (uncredited)
Nancy Laurents ... Photographer (uncredited)
Gracille LaVinder ... Police Matron (uncredited)
DeForrest Lawrence ... Adam's Assistant (uncredited)
Gustave Lax ... Juror (uncredited)
Lester Luther ... Judge Poynter (uncredited)
George Magrill ... Subway Conductor (uncredited)
Dwight Martin ... Photographer (uncredited)
Louis Mason ... Louie - Elevator Operator (uncredited)
John Maxwell ... Court Clerk (uncredited)

David McMahon ... Reporter (uncredited)
Walter Merrill ... Undetermined Role (uncredited)
Frank Mills ... Juror (uncredited)
Ralph Montgomery ... Photographer (uncredited)

Anna Q. Nilsson ... Mrs. Poynter (uncredited)
James Nolan ... Dave (uncredited)

Tommy Noonan ... Reporter (uncredited)
Gil Patric ... Criminal Attorney (uncredited)

'Snub' Pollard ... Man in Courtroom (uncredited)
Dan Quigg ... Reporter (uncredited)
Tom Quinn ... Photographer (uncredited)
Paula Raymond ... Emerald - Kip's Girlfriend (uncredited)
William Self ... Benjamin Klausner - Jury Foreman (uncredited)
Will Stanton ... Taxicab Driver (uncredited)
Bert Stevens ... Courtroom Extra (uncredited)
Brick Sullivan ... Court Clerk (uncredited)
Arthur Tovey ... Courtroom Spectator (uncredited)
Ray Walker ... Photographer (uncredited)
Glen Walters ... Juror (uncredited)
Marjorie Wood ... Mrs. Marcasson (uncredited)
Wilson Wood ... Reporter (uncredited)

Directed by
George Cukor 
 
Writing credits
Ruth Gordon (screen play) and
Garson Kanin (screen play)

Produced by
Lawrence Weingarten .... producer
 
Original Music by
Miklós Rózsa  (as Miklos Rozsa)
 
Cinematography by
George J. Folsey (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
George Boemler (film editor)
 
Art Direction by
William Ferrari 
Cedric Gibbons 
 
Set Decoration by
Edwin B. Willis (set decorations)
 
Makeup Department
Jack Dawn .... makeup creator
Sydney Guilaroff .... hair styles designer
 
Production Management
Charles Levin .... unit manager (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Joel Freeman .... assistant director (uncredited)
Jack Greenwood .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Henry Grace .... associate set decorator (as Henry W. Grace)
Frank Wesselhoff .... painter (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Douglas Shearer .... recording supervisor
Douglas Shearer .... sound recordist (uncredited)
 
Special Effects by
A. Arnold Gillespie .... special effects
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Walter Plunkett .... costumes: Miss Hepburn
 
Music Department
William Axt .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
George Bassman .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
Eugene Zador .... orchestrator (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
101 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)
Certification:
Argentina:Atp | Australia:PG | Australia:G (alternate rating) | Netherlands:14 (original rating) (1951) | New Zealand:PG | Portugal:M/12 | Sweden:15 | UK:U | USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:Approved (PCA #14039)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
When Tom Ewell is walking to his girlfriend's apartment at the beginning of the film, he is whistling "You Are My Lucky Star". This song is also featured in Singin' in the Rain (1952) which stars the same actress who plays Tom Ewell's girlfriend, Jean Hagen.See more »
Goofs:
Crew or equipment visible: Near the end of the first scene in Adam's office, the reflections of large rectangular set lights can be seen in the framed diplomas lining the office walls.See more »
Quotes:
Amanda Bonner:And after you shot your husband... how did you feel?
Doris Attinger:Hungry!
See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
43 out of 45 people found the following review useful.
The Best of Hepburn and Tracy, 8 October 2004
Author: swayland7 (swayland7@hotmail.com) from Bloomington, IN

Of the nine films which paired Spencer Tracy and Katherine Hepburn, Adam's Rib is often considered the best. Writers Ruth Gordon and Garson Kanin were friends of the famous couple and wrote the film specifically for them. Kate insisted the film be directed by her favorite screen director, George Cukor, who services the brilliant writing and on-screen chemistry with his trademark elegant staging and unobtrusive style. The result is a comedy that remains the best "battle of the sexes" films ever made.

When Doris Attinger (Judy Holliday) discovers her husband in the arms of another woman, she opens fire and is charged with attempted murder. Enter Adam and Amanda Bonner (Tracy and Hepburn), married lawyers whose lives are turned upside down when Adam is assigned to the prosecution. An ardent proponent of women's rights, Amanda decides to represent Doris, claiming that if the sex of the parties on trial were switched, the jury would feel differently. This conflict of interests creates friction in the courtroom as well as the Bonners' home.

Spencer Tracy, with his confident and relaxed screen presence, paints Adam as a man quite comfortable with his wife's force and ambition. But Adam grows upset with Amanda as the media spotlight finds the case and magnifies it into a cause for women's rights. He accuses Amanda with disregard for the law, reminding her that no one, man or woman, has the right to take the law into their own hands, and that Amanda is using the case for her own selfish purposes. The script is careful not to polarize Adam's interests. He reveres the law and has no special affection for Doris' husband. In opposing him, Katherine Hepburn manages to retain her signature strength while also portraying Amanda as a loving wife who fears the damage her marriage may sustain because of the case and its publicity. Amanda alleges that Doris is doomed to an unfair trial because the general public irrationally feels male infidelity is much more permissible than female infidelity.

The courtroom becomes a spectacle when Amanda puts a circus strong-woman on the stand and asks her to lift Adam. Tracy rises to the occasion, with an angry outburst that is empowered by his otherwise calm and restrained performance. Despite their marital bliss before the case, Adam admits that he likes "two sexes" and doesn't care for having a wife who is a "new woman" and a "competitor". This rare outpouring causes Amanda to realize just how personally Adam is taking the trial, and that it could result in their divorce.

Ruth Gordon and Garson Kanin deserve special recognition for creating a balanced on-screen battle in what has always been a controversial debate - gender equality. Amanda's plight is shaded by her experiences as a woman, and Adam is presented as a man who admits to always trying to hear her side of the story. That their marriage was a happy one before the trial is an indication of the equality they had achieved together. Amanda is, in fact, equal to Adam in both the career and financial worlds. To create a sparring partner for Amanda, Gordon and Kanin could easily have presented a misogynist, or even a lovable but cantankerous traditionalist. They were wiser to portray Adam as a man who simply refused to see the case as one for gender equality, but for vigilantism.

As directed by George Cukor, Adam's Rib features a great many long takes that play uninterrupted. Even during moments of action, like the scene in which both Bonners are getting dressed for dinner, Cukor utilizes minimal staging and camera movement. The camera points directly across the Bonners' bedroom, with her dressing room off frame left and his off frame right. They shout at each other, poking their heads into the frame, occasionally walking through the frame and back again. And later, when Adam discovers Kip and Amanda together, the ensuing fight is framed similarly, with the camera looking down the apartment hallway, characters popping into frame from the left or right and back again. This isn't to say Cukor doesn't move his camera much. There are several decisive camera movements, but Cukor's sparing use of them, and his tendency to rely more on well-composed master angles gives the film an elegant, traditional Hollywood style. The film also benefits from a lively score by Mikos Rozsa and a catchy Cole Porter tune, "Farewell Amanda". Jean Hagen, unforgettable for her comic turn in Singin' in the Rain, again demonstrates her talent for comedy as the "other woman".

Cukor must have realized that with Tracy and Hepburn on screen, all the camera really had to do was follow them, frame them, and let the sparks fly.

The screenplay and the actors' off-screen romance are gifts to the film. We feel for both of them, and believe in what both are trying to achieve. It is rare that a film about difference and equality plays so fairly to all parties involved, and also rare that such a sensitive subject can retain its comic appeal. But for all the film says about equality, Adam's Rib ultimately serves to remind us that when it comes to Hepburn and Tracy, there is no equal. - Scott Schirmer

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Adam's Rib (1949)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Double bed AND single bed in the bedroom - why? emenel
Spencer Tracy - annoying...? ang-son
One pain in the neck neighbor theowinthrop
Were the censors asleep or do I just have a dirty mind? ruscianowski
Things that bugged me *spoilers* juzgame
tea and curry, that's the thing... rachaelov
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