The Prisoner of Second Avenue Film Details
Overview: A suddenly-unemployed company executive suffers a nervous breakdown, and his supporting wife tries everything to console him and pick up the slack.
Tagline: …and you think you’ve got problems.
Review: That moment of Anne Bancroft’s is my favorite part of the entire film, often imitated where I used to work. No one loves urban blight like Neil Simon, and no one depicts it as well. “The Prisoner of Second Avenue” goes much further than “The Out of Towners” because now, the leads (Jack Lemmon and Anne Bancroft) are actually living in a New York apartment, sleeping in 12 degree air conditioning in their bedroom during a heat wave and sweating everywhere else. Simon leaves nothing out: not having the right change for the bus, the elevator being out, no water, noisy neighbors, mean neighbors, a cheaply put together building, robberies in broad daylight, etc. Lemmon plays a 22-year veteran of a business who is fired, suffers a nervous breakdown, and goes into psychiatric care. His problems go beyond the loss of his job – he has to cope with his country dwelling brother Harry (Gene Saks) and his two sisters (Elizabeth Wilson and Florence Stanley) who want to help but only succeed in being aggravating. Also, his wife has gone back to work as a production assistant and is never home. This is really a comedy-drama that shows the enormous range of both actors. The beautiful Bancroft is great as an empty nester who tries to be supportive of her husband, who is losing it, as she goes toward the same territory; Lemmon is alternatively a riot, as annoying as Felix Unger, and as sad as his character in “Save the Tiger” while he attempts to work through his issues and find out who he is. With a high rise at Second Avenue and E. 88th St. as a backdrop, “The Prisoner of Second Avenue” is timely today because it takes place during a recession. Suddenly, a lifestyle that wasn’t so outrageous to begin with is hard to keep up, and nerves fray. City dwellers won’t find it difficult to relate to this film, and today, with jobs cuts and loss of income, nobody will. Lots of fun.
Country: United States
Duration: 98 min
Also known as: Desgraças de Um Citadino,Prigioniero della seconda strada,The Prisoner of Second Avenue,Prizonierul din Manhattan,Snacka om trubbel,O Prisioneiro da Segunda Avenida,Kjepper i hjulet,El prisionero de la Segunda Avenida,Prizonierul din bulevardul 2,A Második utca foglyai,The Prisoner of 2nd Avenue,Das Nervenbündel,Lille mand i knibe,Päreet palaa!,Oi aihmalotoi tis 2as leoforou,Οι αιχμάλωτοι της 2ας λεωφόρου,Пленник второй авеню,Więzień Drugiej Alei,Prisionero de sí mismo,Zajatec 2. avenue,Le Prisonnier de la 2ème Avenue