Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Laywer* (for Lawyer*)

In the classic 1949 romantic comedy Adam's Rib, married lawyers Adam and Amanda Bonner really lay into each other as opposing counsel in the sensational trial of a woman charged with shooting her faithless layabout of a husband. Whether you like your arguments in the courtroom or the bedroom, you'll find plenty to enjoy in this four-star Hepburn-Tracy vehicle. Amanda alleges that turnabout is fair play and that her client ought not to be judged more harshly than a wronged husband would be. Adam's response is that his distaff side is simply flouting the law, and being unattractively uppity to boot. Ironically, the battling Bonners are not above a little domestic violence of their own, with Adam whacking his wife's behind a bit too meaningly during a massage ("I know a slap from a slug!" she tells him) and later brandishing a rather realistic-looking licorice gun. Fortunately, it's all in the name of good fun and forties-style feminism. Laywer* (for lawyer*) turns up 13 times in OhioLINK.

(Cropped screenshot of Spencer Tracy and Katherine Hepburn from the trailer for Adam's Rib, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.)

Carol Reid

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