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Adam's Rib (1949)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 18 November 1949 (USA)
Domestic and professional tensions mount when a husband and wife work as opposing lawyers in a case involving a woman who shot her husband.

Director:

George Cukor

Writers:

Ruth Gordon (screen play), Garson Kanin (screen play)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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 Eve March ... Grace
Clarence Kolb ... Judge Reiser
Emerson Treacy ... Jules Frikke
Polly Moran ... Mrs. McGrath
Will Wright ... Judge Marcasson
Elizabeth Flournoy Elizabeth Flournoy ... Dr. Margaret Brodeigh
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Storyline

When a woman attempts to kill her uncaring husband, prosecutor Adam Bonner gets the case. Unfortunately for him his wife Amanda (who happens to be a lawyer too) decides to defend the woman in court. Amanda uses everything she can to win the case and Adam gets mad about it. As a result, their perfect marriage is disturbed by everyday quarrels... Written by Chris Makrozahopoulos <makzax@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

WHO WEARS THE PANTS? (original print ad - all caps) See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 November 1949 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Man and Wife See more »

Filming Locations:

Newtown, Connecticut, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the scene in which Amanda is driving Adam to work, he tells her, "Oh, you're giving me the Bryn Mawr accent". Bryn Mawr College was Katharine Hepburn's alma mater, where she claimed to have gained her distinctive voice. See more »

Goofs

Early in film, Amanda wildly turns steering wheel from one side to another while driving down straight New York street. See more »

Quotes

Kip Lurie: [to Adam] What have you been eating, raspberry jam or Amanda's face?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits are little curtains that go up and down, on a stage in a performance hall. See more »

Alternate Versions

Also available in a computer colorized version. See more »

Connections

Featured in The Men Who Made the Movies: George Cukor (1973) See more »

Soundtracks

Mrs. Marcasson
(uncredited)
Music by Harold Gelman
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Clever, humane comedy
26 June 2000 | by SpleenSee all my reviews

For a while it seems that "Adam's Rib" will be hard to take. More precisely: Katharine Hepburn's Amanda is hard to take. Her feminism - when put to the test - amounts to little more than anthem singing; and however sympathetic her client may be, we can see at once that the case for the defence is almost entirely frivolous. Yet George Cukor is standing in the gallery, apparently cheering her on. It's infuriating. It's like watching an Edwardian comedy about suffragettes.

Well, no. The film is a good deal smarter than we had given it credit for being ... oh, very well, smarter than *I* had given it credit for being. Gordon, Kanin and Cukor understand our infuriation; the supposedly shrill dispute in the first half is merely a starting point. Maybe audiences these days AREN'T too sophisticated for this kind of film. Maybe we're too stupid. (Oh, very well, maybe I'M too stupid.) -In any event, this is really a story about Adam and Amanda. Their story becomes deeper as the trial becomes shallower.

Even while it's infuriating us (our infuriation will be used to good effect later, of course) "Adam's Rib" is never less than pleasant to watch. One reason is that Hepburn and Tracy are just so brilliant. The script serves them both well: neither player is denied good lines, and any impression that Hepburn is meant to be just some hothead, or that Tracy is meant to be just some schmuck, is transitory. This is a wonderful script! My only previous exposure to Hepburn and Tracy had been in "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner", where their partnership was the only thing holding the film together; I wasn't at all prepared for the sheer energy they generate when they set to work on stronger material. Moreover they seem perfectly natural as a married couple.

The music is good, too. There's a catchy original song (not a gratuitous addition ... although it wouldn't matter if it was) by Cole Porter; the rest of the score was written by Miklós Rózsa, in one of his rare lighter moments.


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