Diary of a Mad Housewife (1970)
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In this film, Carrie Snodgress plays the long-suffering wife of pushy, insensitive attorney Richard Benjamin. Unable to withstand being treated as a trophy, Snodgress has a brief affair with sexy Frank Langella. Langella, like virtually every other male character in the film, is just as selfish and self-involved as Benjamin.
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Critic Reviews for Diary of a Mad Housewife
An engrossing story of the disintegration of a modern loveless marriage.
It's an entertaining satire that disappoints only in the stereotypically limited choices it offers to the woman.
Among the performers, Carrie Snodgress will surely receive the critical praise she deeply deserves.
What makes the movie work, however, is that it's played entirely from the housewife's point of view, and that the housewife is played brilliantly by Carrie Snodgress.
Frank Perry's screen version lacks the satirical bite of the novel but benefits from the powerful performance of Carrie Snodgress who deservedly received an Oscar nomination.
Audience Reviews for Diary of a Mad Housewife
The story of an average housewife who is married to the most annoying man in the world, you can't blame her for cheating on him! You sympathize with her. This is a fantastic drama, very psychological and intense. Plus, there's a scene with an early Alice Cooper band playing at a party! Check it out, it's cool.More
"Diary of a Mad Housewife" is impeccably acted and characterized, though more "play-like" than I prefer. There is little action beyond small-room dialogue, and no notable directing choices beyond a couple of sharp time-lapse montages. I always heard Carrie Snodgrass's Oscar-nominated performance was amazing, but I was actually more impressed with Richard Benjamin. Without relying on any of the usual vices (physical abuse, addiction, womanizing), Benjamin's social-climbing lawyer manages to be one of the most repellent husbands you've ever seen in a film. Self-involved, needy, callous, childish, grasping, anal-retentive...he has it all. Every time he playfully suggests "a roll in dee ha-ay" to his wife, you hope she'll brain him with a baseball bat.
Frank Langella is also good as a self-involved cad who (initially) seems like a refreshing escape for Snodgrass. Music fans will enjoy an unexpected live performance by Alice Cooper and band, and there's also an oh-so-brief cameo by the young Peter Boyle.
Hard to guess why this film was never released on DVD.
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