7.2/10
4,159
49 user 26 critic

An Unmarried Woman (1978)

A wealthy woman from Manhattan's Upper East Side struggles to deal with her new identity and her sexuality after her husband of sixteen years leaves her for a younger woman.

Director:

Paul Mazursky

Writer:

Paul Mazursky
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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 6 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jill Clayburgh ... Erica
Alan Bates ... Saul Kaplan
Michael Murphy ... Martin
Cliff Gorman ... Charlie
Patricia Quinn ... Sue (as Pat Quinn)
Kelly Bishop ... Elaine
Lisa Lucas ... Patti
Linda Miller ... Jeannette
Andrew Duncan ... Bob
Daniel Seltzer Daniel Seltzer ... Dr. Jacobs
Matthew Arkin ... Phil
Penelope Russianoff Penelope Russianoff ... Tanya
Novella Nelson ... Jean
Raymond J. Barry ... Edward
Ivan Karp Ivan Karp ... Herb Rowan
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Storyline

Erica is unmarried only temporarily, in that her successful, wealthy husband of seventeen years has just left her for a girl he met while buying a shirt in Bloomingdale's. This movie shows Erica coming to terms with the break-up, while revising her opinions of herself, redefining that self in its own right rather than as an extension of somebody else's personality, and finally going out with another man. Erica refuses to drop everything for Saul, an abstract expressionist painter, simply out of love for him, because he expects her to. It is not so much loneliness that is her problem, and the problems that men, flitting around this newly "available" woman like moths round a flame, bring to her sense of independence. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

She laughs, she cries, she feels angry, she feels lonely, she feels guilty, she makes breakfast, she makes love, she makes do, she is strong, she is weak, she is brave, she is scared, she is... an unmarried woman.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 May 1978 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Una mujer descasada See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$24,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Due to delays in filming Luna (1979), Jill Clayburgh missed attending several awards ceremonies for which she had been nominated for this movie. Around the same time, dubbing sessions for Luna (1979) had to be postponed until Clayburgh had finished work on Starting Over (1979). See more »

Goofs

The boom is clearly visible for several seconds during the art gallery scene. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[Martin and Erica are jogging along the river]
Martin: Jesus Christ! Look at this - my sneaker's ruined!
Erica: They're only thirty-five dollars.
[Erica takes Martin's shoe and cleans it off for him]
Martin: Fucking city's turning into one big pile of DOG SHIT!
[shouting at passing traffic]
Martin: Come on out and take a crap on me - everybody else is. Fuck.
[Martin lights a cigarette]
Erica: ...been jogging for 2 1/2 miles - you're giving yourself lung cancer.
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

For Betsy See more »


Soundtracks

An Unmarried Woman
Lyrics By Michelle Wiley
Arranged By Jerry Peters
Music composed by Bill Conti
Vocals by Michelle Wiley
© (p) 1978, 20th Century-Fox Record Corporation
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Perhaps inspiring but unrealistic
22 August 2006 | by bpinzkaSee all my reviews

I disliked An Unmarried Woman, starring Jill Clayburgh and Alan Bates. Clayburgh's character gets dumped by her philandering husband, of whom she suspected nothing of the sort. She keeps the gorgeous apartment and seems financially fit;something that seldom happens in real life. While wallowing in her grief and self-pity, on her first try she finds the perfect shrink and then her first date is a dashing, sensitive artist played by the dashing, sensitive Alan Bates. I saw this with another recently-divorced woman and we were rolling our eyes skyward throughout the movie, asking the good Lord for patience.

Let's see a movie about a woman without any real marketable skills who gets dumped, with several children to care for, who has to depend on public social services for help? BTW, there's some value in comparing this to the 2005 movie The Upside of Anger, in which another woman, this time played by Joan Allen, gets dumped and, in her case, is left with four teenage daughters. While she hasn't financial woes, the psychological trauma rings far more true than in the self-serving Unmarried Woman.

Why did I give it a 6? The outstanding cast and production teams. Consider it a gift.


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