One of the greatest – or oddest – on-screen couples of all time returns to DVD in a Centennial Collection edition. Yes, it’s Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon, and they are The Odd Couple.
In The Odd Couple, Lemmon plays Felix Ungar, a man who just been kicked by his wife. Left to fend for himself, he ponders suicide until he is taken in by his friend Oscar Madison (Matthau), a divorcee who lives simply and like a slob. Felix seems to be the perfect complement to this, as he’s a clean freak verging on obsessive compulsive. Unfortunately, Felix’s mannerisms begin to gnaw at Oscar’s soul…
Though made 40 years ago, The Odd Couple is still a hilarious film that lives up to expectations. The movie, directed by Gen Saks and written by Neil Simon, is simply done – but it works. Funny enough, having watched this movie the other day, I realized that I had never seen it before; I’d seen the sequel, but never this original classic. I’m amazed I went this long without seeing The Odd Couple.
There’s not much else to say: the movie is pitch perfect. It doesn’t try too hard; it doesn’t try to cram jokes into every second of the picture. The comedy comes naturally, and a lot of that is thanks to the chemistry between Lemmon and Matthau. They play off each other expecially well, but the supporting cast is also strong. The two women are hilarious, as are the poker friends.
Those of the younger generation (like me) who haven’t gotten around to seeing The Odd Couple should give it a chance. It is surprisingly modern in its presentation, and yet harkens back to a day when comedies didn’t need to be edgy or over-the-top to succeed.
The Odd Couple comes to Centennial Collection DVD on Tuesday, March 24, 2009 and includes the following bonus features:
- Commentary by Charlie Matthau and Chris Lemmon
- In the Beginning…
- Matthau & Lemmon
- Memories from the Set
- Inside The Odd Couple
- The Odd Couple: A Classic
- Photo galleries
- Theatrical trailer