The Prisoner of Second Avenue Reviews

  • Jul 12, 2018

    Wow, just wow. The story of This film is transcendent of generations. Mel and Edna can easily be me and my wife. The hardships of the 70'2 are still the same hardships of today. It is 2018 and this film's plot and characters are still just as relevant as when this movie premiered. As a matter of fact, even the news update snippets sound like snippets of today's society. Neil Simon was and will always be known as a great playwright and his stories (just like Shakespeare's) can be used by any generation. The acting was amazing (loved the chemistry of Jack and Anne), great supporting actors portraying great supporting characters. Melvin Frank's vision for the film was a key to the success of this flm. Recomend this to anyone in their forties no matter what year we are living in.

    Wow, just wow. The story of This film is transcendent of generations. Mel and Edna can easily be me and my wife. The hardships of the 70'2 are still the same hardships of today. It is 2018 and this film's plot and characters are still just as relevant as when this movie premiered. As a matter of fact, even the news update snippets sound like snippets of today's society. Neil Simon was and will always be known as a great playwright and his stories (just like Shakespeare's) can be used by any generation. The acting was amazing (loved the chemistry of Jack and Anne), great supporting actors portraying great supporting characters. Melvin Frank's vision for the film was a key to the success of this flm. Recomend this to anyone in their forties no matter what year we are living in.

  • Dec 27, 2016

    'a lessor neil simon' I don't think so and this has the best balance of humour & pathos no ez feat

    'a lessor neil simon' I don't think so and this has the best balance of humour & pathos no ez feat

  • Oct 11, 2015

    Trite and boring. Another waste of time from Doc Neil Simon. I will never understand his appeal. Jack Lemmon and Anne Bancroft could be more irritating. Avoid It.

    Trite and boring. Another waste of time from Doc Neil Simon. I will never understand his appeal. Jack Lemmon and Anne Bancroft could be more irritating. Avoid It.

  • Jan 07, 2014

    A Hearty Approval of a Wonderful Film--Brilliant piece of writing!!

    A Hearty Approval of a Wonderful Film--Brilliant piece of writing!!

  • Dec 19, 2013

    Sous ses abords de comedie hysterique tres theatre filme, Le Prisonnier de la Seconde Avenue est pourtant un film tres reussi, grace a un scenario qui monte crescendo, une interpretation parfaite du couple Jack Lemmon - Anne Bancroft, une musique splendide de Marvin Hamlisch et bien evidemment la mise en scene toute en retenue de Melvin Frank. Une jolie reussite avec en bonus un jeune Sylvester Stallone qui se fait tabasser par Lemmon.

    Sous ses abords de comedie hysterique tres theatre filme, Le Prisonnier de la Seconde Avenue est pourtant un film tres reussi, grace a un scenario qui monte crescendo, une interpretation parfaite du couple Jack Lemmon - Anne Bancroft, une musique splendide de Marvin Hamlisch et bien evidemment la mise en scene toute en retenue de Melvin Frank. Une jolie reussite avec en bonus un jeune Sylvester Stallone qui se fait tabasser par Lemmon.

  • Nov 27, 2013

    One of my all-time favorites.

    One of my all-time favorites.

  • Mar 21, 2013

    There's nothing more amusing than Jack Lemmon slowly losing it until he has a freaked out shouting jag, and this one is filled with that sort of thing. Well worth a rental, or the $3 I paid for it at Big Lots.

    There's nothing more amusing than Jack Lemmon slowly losing it until he has a freaked out shouting jag, and this one is filled with that sort of thing. Well worth a rental, or the $3 I paid for it at Big Lots.

  • Jan 22, 2013

    Filled with Neil Simon wit and heart tugging drama

    Filled with Neil Simon wit and heart tugging drama

  • Jan 28, 2011

    If Neil Simon's The Prisoner of Second Avenue is less than an intense survey of a married couple impelled to nervous breakdown by the exasperations and disgrace of bourgeois living, it still achieves compelling thrust, both somber and hilarious, mostly the latter though. If Melvin Frank's direction is accomplished but not inventive, he's skillfully served by a cast largely populated by Jack Lemmon and Anne Bancroft, who launch vigorously sincere characterization as credible as the real Second Avenue and other New York locales captured by the Technicolor cameras. Lemmon is aggravated and angst-peppered owing to the defective air-conditioning and thoughtless neighbors in his high-rise apartment house, among other things. And, his tattered nerves aren't greatly relieved when he is fired by his on-the-fence company. As an unemployed ad executive, he can't be liable for being impatient with the unemployment office. And he shouldn't be condemned for pounding on flimsy walls, cursing the neighbors, who drench him with water in reprisal, and developing neuroses swollen by imposed joblessness and appointments with an evasive shrink. If Bancroft, as his genuinely devoted spouse who purposefully gets a job to sustain them, becomes overwrought and bemused to the point of paranoia, she, too, can't be blamed for her mounting worries when she ultimately must choose whether to receive financial help from her husband's apprehensive, if quizzical, siblings. Lemmon, no alien to Simon's work, and Bancroft are most believable and identifiable when unromanticized, and the strength of the piece is in their collaboration in roles as familiar in their comic reciprocating as many of New York's scuttling millions. And they get strong support from Odd Couple director Gene Saks, as Lemmon's prosperous, straightforward older brother and Elizabeth Wilson and Florence Stanley, as his suspicious sisters, not to mention a young Sylvester Stallone's hilarious scene, which could be the high point of the picture. They aren't in the thick of Greek tragedy or in humdrum sitcom TV. Simon is sober about a premise that isn't momentous and he reasonably swathes its earnestness with real laughs that pop up, including radio news items such as the update that a Polish freighter has just collided with the Statue of Liberty. And, with a cast whose members recognize the value of what they're saying and doing, the trials and tribulations of Second Avenue become a diversion.

    If Neil Simon's The Prisoner of Second Avenue is less than an intense survey of a married couple impelled to nervous breakdown by the exasperations and disgrace of bourgeois living, it still achieves compelling thrust, both somber and hilarious, mostly the latter though. If Melvin Frank's direction is accomplished but not inventive, he's skillfully served by a cast largely populated by Jack Lemmon and Anne Bancroft, who launch vigorously sincere characterization as credible as the real Second Avenue and other New York locales captured by the Technicolor cameras. Lemmon is aggravated and angst-peppered owing to the defective air-conditioning and thoughtless neighbors in his high-rise apartment house, among other things. And, his tattered nerves aren't greatly relieved when he is fired by his on-the-fence company. As an unemployed ad executive, he can't be liable for being impatient with the unemployment office. And he shouldn't be condemned for pounding on flimsy walls, cursing the neighbors, who drench him with water in reprisal, and developing neuroses swollen by imposed joblessness and appointments with an evasive shrink. If Bancroft, as his genuinely devoted spouse who purposefully gets a job to sustain them, becomes overwrought and bemused to the point of paranoia, she, too, can't be blamed for her mounting worries when she ultimately must choose whether to receive financial help from her husband's apprehensive, if quizzical, siblings. Lemmon, no alien to Simon's work, and Bancroft are most believable and identifiable when unromanticized, and the strength of the piece is in their collaboration in roles as familiar in their comic reciprocating as many of New York's scuttling millions. And they get strong support from Odd Couple director Gene Saks, as Lemmon's prosperous, straightforward older brother and Elizabeth Wilson and Florence Stanley, as his suspicious sisters, not to mention a young Sylvester Stallone's hilarious scene, which could be the high point of the picture. They aren't in the thick of Greek tragedy or in humdrum sitcom TV. Simon is sober about a premise that isn't momentous and he reasonably swathes its earnestness with real laughs that pop up, including radio news items such as the update that a Polish freighter has just collided with the Statue of Liberty. And, with a cast whose members recognize the value of what they're saying and doing, the trials and tribulations of Second Avenue become a diversion.

  • Jan 16, 2011

    Neil Simon's sharp dialogue and a flat out fantastic performance by Jack Lemmon are reasons enough to watch this obscure comedy about a married couple whose world crumbles around them.

    Neil Simon's sharp dialogue and a flat out fantastic performance by Jack Lemmon are reasons enough to watch this obscure comedy about a married couple whose world crumbles around them.