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The Ladies Man

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PG
1961

Jerry Lewis stars in the 1961 comedy film "The Ladies Man," directed and co-written by Lewis himself. The film, which also stars Helen Traubel and Pat Stanley, follows a young man named Herbert H. Heebert who finds himself emotionally scarred after being dumped by his girlfriend. Seeking to start anew, Heebert takes a job at a women's boarding house and must navigate a variety of colorful characters while trying to regain his self-confidence and romance a young woman named Fay.

The story of "The Ladies Man" is told through a series of comedic set pieces that showcase Lewis's trademark physical comedy and verbal wit. The film opens with a black-and-white sequence in which we see Heebert's girlfriend leave him at the altar, a traumatic experience that sets the tone for the rest of the movie. After losing his job and his apartment, Heebert stumbles upon a women's boarding house run by the stern and no-nonsense Mrs. Wellenmellon (Traubel). Heebert takes on the role of houseboy and quickly discovers that he is the only male in a house full of eccentric and flirtatious women.

As Heebert goes about his duties, he finds himself in the middle of various romantic entanglements involving the house's residents. These include Fay (Stanley), a young woman who catches Heebert's eye and whom he tries to woo throughout the film. Other characters who populate the house include a man-hating feminist, a washed-up actress, and a woman who is secretly in love with Heebert herself. Lewis's performance as Heebert is both charming and endearing, capturing the character's sweet nature and bumbling awkwardness in a way that is both funny and relatable.

Throughout the film, Lewis employs a variety of comic techniques to elicit laughs from the audience. These include physical gags such as falling down stairs and getting trapped in doorways, as well as verbal humor such as witticisms and wordplay. One memorable sequence involves Heebert trying to catch a chicken in the house's backyard, resulting in chaos and slapstick hijinks that culminate in a pun-filled joke. Another involves Heebert trying to impress Fay by serenading her with a song, only to be interrupted by Mrs. Wellenmellon's booming voice.

Despite being a comedy, "The Ladies Man" also has moments of pathos and sincerity. Heebert's struggle to come to terms with his emotional scars and find love again is a relatable one, and the film touches on themes of self-doubt and insecurity in a way that is both honest and heartfelt. The supporting characters, while often played for laughs, also have their own vulnerabilities and struggles, making them more than just caricatures. The film's climactic sequence, which involves a dinner party gone awry, contains both hilarious moments and poignant ones that showcase Lewis's talents as both a comedian and a storyteller.

Overall, "The Ladies Man" is a classic comedy film that showcases Jerry Lewis at his best. From its slapstick humor to its tender moments of sincerity, the film is a masterclass in comedic storytelling that remains funny and engaging more than 60 years later. Whether you're a fan of classic Hollywood comedies or just in the mood for a good laugh, "The Ladies Man" is a must-see film that will leave you smiling and wanting more.

The Ladies Man is a Comedy movie released in 1961. It has a runtime of 106 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 6.3..

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6.3/10
Director
Jerry Lewis
Stars
Jerry Lewis, Helen Traubel, Kathleen Freeman, Buddy Lester, George Raft
Genres
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