You know how sometimes you read a book and it just speaks to you? I mean speaks to the very core of your being, touches a deep nerve in your soul and scares the hell out of you? Stepford Wives was like that for me.
Written by Ira Levin and published in 1972, this is a chilling novel about a town where all of the women are picture-perfect. Their homes are perfect, they look perfect, they’re perfect wives and mothers. When Joanna and her family move to the town of Stepford, she notices that all of the women are simply perfection. As she gets to know them, she realizes that they’re not quite real. They’re little more than dolls. Stripped of any ambitions or personality, they exist only to serve. Things get darker when Joanna starts to realize that her husband has plans to make her into the perfect Stepford wife.
It’s a dark satire from the king of such things.
Unfortunately, they had to ruin all that to make a movie.
Released in 2004, written by Paul Rudnick and starring Nicole Kidman, Stepford Wives was a nonsensical romp through an intelligent premise.
Let’s start with the comedic feel of the movie. It’s out of place. The characters shouldn’t be cracking jokes that lighten the tension. The whole point is to increase the tension. Apparently, no one told Rudnick that. While some of the jokes were funny, that isn’t the point. Except for Evil Dead, if you’re getting chuckles in a horror movie you’ve failed.
Now, let’s talk about the overall message. The tone in the novel is clear. Women, take care that you don’t lose your individuality in the pursuit of perfect homemaking. The message for the movie was, um, men are bad and stupid? Just sex-driven idiots? Even when it’s a woman behind the whole thing, boys are bad and should be punished. Spare me, please.
If you’re looking for a chilling classic tale, read The Stepford Wives. If you’re in the mood for a creepy movie, watch something else.
(1 / 5)