After graduating from a prestigious Eastern university, eight devoted women friends go their separate ways: one leaves for Europe, while the others experience troubled relationships. Sadly, they get to meet one last time as a group.
In June 1933, eight young women, who are close friends and members of the upper-class group at South Tower College, graduate and start their adult lives. The film documents the years between their graduation and the beginning of the Second World War in Europe, and shows, in a serialized style, their romances and marriages, their searches for careers or meaning in their lives, their highs and their lows.Written by
Gary Dickerson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sidney Lumet's The Group takes Mary McCarthy's novel and puts enough of it on film to make a compelling enough drama
Just watched for the second time in my life this Sidney Lumet adaptation of Mary McCarthy's novel "The Group", this time on Netflix streaming. It's about eight women who graduated from Vassar in 1933 and their trials and tribulations during that time and subsequent years through the beginning of the second World War. Among those women, the standout for me was Shirley Knight as Polly who goes from an affair with a publisher boss (Hal Holbrook) of one of her friends to falling for a doctor (James Broderick) she works for. She also willingly suffers a father (Robert Emhardt) who's eventually diagnosed as manic depressive. Emhardt's performance is perhaps the most enjoyable to me since he talks up a storm and says such inappropriately funny lines! It was also fascinating to see Larry Hagman play a role here not too different from his later iconic evil character of J.R. Ewing on both versions of "Dallas" only here, he's not such a fun person to watch. I was also pleasantly surprised to find out that the Richard Mulligan and Joan Hackett characters were awkward to each other but the actors would eventually marry in real life not long after. Oh, and Candice Bergen, for all her reputation of not being much of an actress during her early career, acquits herself nicely among her more trained co-stars in the few scenes she has here. In summary, The Group perhaps comes on a bit fast at the beginning to really get an understanding of what's going on and who these people are but eventually it slows down enough that you do get to know and mostly like these people as the film progresses. In the words of many of the characters of this film, "Who'd a thunk it?"
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