How to Murder Your Wife

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64%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 14

64%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 3,556

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Movie Info

Stanley Ford (Jack Lemmon) is a successful cartoonist and happily single. That is, until, he gets drunk at a friend's bachelor party and impulsively proposes to the beautiful woman who pops out of the cake (Virna Lisi). Once sober, he regrets the decision, but she won't agree to a divorce. Stanley jokingly vents his frustrations in his comic strip by having the main character kill his wife. But when his actual wife goes missing and Stanley is arrested for her murder, he has a change of heart.

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Critic Reviews for How to Murder Your Wife

All Critics (14) | Top Critics (3) | Fresh (9) | Rotten (5)

  • A nimble comedy that doesn't make much sense because it makes nonsense, most of it screechingly funny and played by knockabouts who know that the slapstick was invented for keeping an idea aloft, not for beating it into the ground.

    May 9, 2011 | Full Review…
    TIME Magazine
    Top Critic
  • Finesse and desire aren't enough to overcome the fact that Axelrod's script doesn't make the most of its potentially antic situations.

    March 26, 2009 | Full Review…

    Variety Staff

    Variety
    Top Critic
  • Believable or not, this stuff is funny just so long as one can go with the sour joke- -and that depends upon one's tolerance of trivia and also, perhaps, upon whether one is a fellow or a girl.

    May 9, 2005 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • In the screwball tradition, but the old shack has been redecorated with solid-mahogany furniture, plush drapes and wall-to-wall carpeting.

    August 13, 2019 | Full Review…
  • This dated comedy is saved by Lemmon's comedic genius which eschews macho.

    May 9, 2011 | Rating: 3.5/4 | Full Review…
  • Quote not available.

    June 11, 2005 | Rating: 2/5

Audience Reviews for How to Murder Your Wife

  • Aug 18, 2011
    A mostly forgotten gem from 1965 this comedy operates under the seductive fantasy that no man ever really wants to be married. After one drunken night's revelry Lemmon awakes to discover he's slipped up ... and did it, got married (to Verna Lisi! Zowie!). Now what? Is there any way out of it??? More cute than laff-out-loud funny it does carry more than a few good bits. It's fun cute.
    Kevin M. W Super Reviewer
  • May 06, 2011
    Stanley Ford is a single man with a good fortune, but he is NOT in want of a wife. He enjoys his bachelor ways as a cartoonist, having his way with women and being taken care of by a butler. In a moment of drunkenness, he marries an Italian woman who doesn't speak a word of English. She is a very loving wife and nothing seems to phase her but Ford hates being married and tries unsuccessfully to dump her. He imagines that he's killed her and emulates his thoughts in his cartoon. Everyone believes he's actually killed her and tries him for murder. That's the basic plot. There are tons of sexist, chauvinistic lines and attitudes. The comedy is dry and insulting to women. Obviously it is satire, but it's still insulting. I sat through the whole movie but it was difficult to watch and I didn't enjoy it.
    Dannielle A Super Reviewer
  • Sep 05, 2010
    The story is predictable and silly, but there are a handful of really hilarious scenes, which save the movie from being too bad.
    Aj V Super Reviewer
  • May 10, 2008
    Haven't seen it in ages, but I remember it was a hoot.
    Morris N Super Reviewer

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