First I must admit I wanted to see this film because of Norwegian Playboy model Lillian Muller. A hard to find film on both DVD and VHS, but worth searching for. With a cast list of several talented actors: Stephen Boyd, Barbara Valentin, Karin Dor, Horst Buchholz and the addition of Lillian Muller, this was an entertaining film.
"Frauenstation" is set in an paternity ward where we meet doctors and patients at job and in private. Main story focus is on Dr. Schuman (Buchholz) and Claudia (Lillian Muller). Claudia is married to the rich doctor and stays at home all day, pampered by husband, maid and a hysteric mother who travels between New York and Germany. Cladia has become a drug addict, bored with her life and not too happy in her marriage. In her doll collection she hides her drugs and birth control pills. Dr. Schuman wants his wife pregnant, but once he finds out the truth he confronts her and their nearly broken marriage. He is tired of Claudias drug abuse, party life and confronts her in a heated argument. Then he takes off and have sex with his favorite nurse. Claudia tries to commit suicide and is wheeled into the hospital as her husband is performing a cesarean birth in the operating room.
Well, "Frauenstation" has it all: teenage pregnancy, abortion, birth, worried women and doctor and nurses that cares. But somehow this film has a touch of exploitation in it. There are very explicit scenes that can be disturbing to watch. One woman is on the operating table giving a cesarean birth, all of a sudden this scene becomes a real life operation, water explodes and baby is pulled out. Same happens when another women actually has an gynecological examination/operation. It is not what you expect to see when watching a film like this. I guess the filmmakers wanted to make it more believable with these scenes, but I have to admit they were kind of hard to swallow. Mostly because you are not prepared to watch them.
Stephen Boyd plays Dr. Oberhoff who lives with his teenage daughter. Looking at Boyds performance it is a far cry from his hay days in Hollywood in films like "Ben Hur" and "Billy Rose's Jumbo". Boyd seems to sleep through this film as a restrained doctor with problems of his own.
Both Boyd and Muller is dubbed. Lillian Muller does a surprisingly good performance with such a complex character, considering she did not have much acting experience. Muller also had another lead in German "Rosemaries Tocher". Her American films gave her very little to do. "Frauenstation" is worth a look, not great. Based on a novel by Marie Louise Fischer.
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