The Apartment Review

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This post is a part of a series of movie reviews of the IMDb Top 100 Movies. For more information on this, you can check out my blog post. This review may contain spoilers.


Another Billy Wilder classic, The Apartment, is our second movie on the list from this Oscar -studded director as well as the second one staring Jack Lemmon. Released in 1960, the movie a little bit of drama mixed in with comedy. We follow the story of a naive office drone, Mr. C. C. Baxter who decides to go up the food chain in an interesting way. He offers his apartment to his bosses so they can use it for their various romps and illicit affairs.

C. C. Baxter (played by Jack Lemmon) is one of the loneliest fellas you’ll ever meet. He’s so lonely, he can’t even go back home in the evening because someone else is using his apartment to get lucky. All he has to show for it are hints of promotions by his bosses and a bunch of empty liquor bottles to throw out. The funny bit is that his neighbors and landlady think that he’s some kind of player because they keep hearing of his “exploits” through the walls and floor of the apartment. Of course, that’s not Baxter but he plays it off as his own. His Doctor neighbor even asks him to donate his body to the medical institute for research so they can figure out how he maintains his tireless loving.

Baxter's Office

5 points if you can figure out which one really needs health benefits.

The movie starts to get even more interesting when Baxter falls for the elevator girl, Miss Kubelik (played by Shirley MacLaine) and it turns out she’s hooking up with one of the bosses in his own apartment! That’s got to really kick it in someone’s teeth. He ends up having to bail out that same boss when Miss Kubelik gets all suicidal and ODs on sleeping pills when things don’t work out. If it wasn’t for the Doctor (played by Jack Kruschen), things would have gone from comedy to horror in a jiffy.

tennis racket

Comedy is making spaghetti with a tennis racket as a strainer. Horror is not having washed it first.

The Apartment is very well written, balancing dark and light humor and drama while trying not to keep the characters from becoming too unrelatable. Kubelik the elevator girl is pretty much out of the way and the only reason it’s not completely annoying is due to MacLaine’s brilliant performance as an actress. Jack Lemmon is as lovable as he was in my first movie on the list and really brought out the cynicism in Billy Wilder’s screenplay while keeping the movie a comedy at heart. The way the plot was going, it was hard to imagine a good ending for him, but I won’t spoil the movie and tell you how he accidentally killed himself with a stray champagne cork. Kidding.

elevator girl

You don’t joke about corks. They’re scarier than sleeping pills.

Memorable Movie Moment:
The way the Doctor tries to revive Miss Kubelik by slapping her multiple times and making her drink coffee. It was both hilarious and morbid at the same time.


The Apartment just goes on to show how accomplished of a director and writer Billy Wilder truly was. With 5 oscars with just this one movie, I’m looking forward to seeing more of his work.

Numero 96 on my list of movies is All About Eve, a straight up drama. This will be my first non-comedy black and white movie.

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