I wish that I could include this movie in my period drama challenge but it does not qualify. I had to watch it anyway because after I read the synopsis it looked really interesting. I streamed this movie on Netflix on Sunday and really enjoyed it.
Goodbye Again was released on June 25, 1961. In Europe it was released as Aimez-vous Brahms?. It is directed and produced by Anatole Litvak. The film stars three of the best actors the world has ever known; Ingrid Bergman, Anthony Perkins and Yves Montand.
Paula is hired by Mrs. Van Der Besh, a socialite to decorate her apartment. On the day that Paula meets Mrs Van Der Besh, she also meets her son Philip Van Der Besh who is played brilliantly by Anthony Perkins. Philip who is only 25 years old is instantly attracted to Paula.
Anthony Perkins always seemed to fit roles where the characters have excessive behaviors. I always wondered if he was like that in real life because he portrayed these types of characters so well.
Philip immediately begins to constantly put himself in Paula’s space. Just about everywhere Paula goes Philip is there. Paula tells Philip that not only is she too old for him, but she is in love with another man. Philip does not care about Paula’s age and he is determined to take Paula away from Roger.
While Roger is away on a business trip Paula finally decides there is no harm in attending a Brahms concert with Philip. All through the show Philip cannot take his eyes off of Paula. It is actually really creepy and that should have been a clue to Paula.
One afternoon Philip spots Roger meeting this woman on the street for a rendezvous. Roger told Paula that he was going on another business trip but Philip knows it is a lie. Roger went away to be with this woman.
When Roger returns from his “business trip” he slips up and Paula realizes that he was with another woman. Paula cannot stand by any longer and take Roger’s philandering.
Paula resolves to move on from Roger.
One problem that Paula has with Philip is that he is a spoiled child that does like to work. While Paula is out working all day Philip is sitting around her apartment. Philip has a job that his mother got for him but he only shows up about once a week. Paula finally has to confront him about it.
Several months after breaking it off with Roger, she runs into him while she is out dining and dancing with Philip. Roger always knew that Philip wanted Paula and he could not stand the thought of Paula with another man, even though he was never faithful to her. Roger visits Paula at her workplace and finally tells her that he cannot live without her. Paula is elated (fool) and gets engaged to Roger. I wanted to scream at my laptop screen at Paula. I knew she was making a big mistake. Roger was simply jealous and did not want Paula to move on from him.
Paula tells Philip to news that she is going to marry Roger. Philip runs off and is a very broken and hurt man.
Philip is in tears as he walks away. I felt so sorry for him.
Paula and Roger get married and things seem fine at first. But one evening as Paula is getting ready to go out and have dinner with her husband he calls and cancels at the last-minute. Deep down Paula knows he is meeting another woman and that his philandering has started again.
I have been madly in love myself a few times, so I know how Paula feels. She is madly in love with Roger and cannot purge him from her system which causes her to make the huge mistake of accepting a man who will not treat her with the respect and love that she deserves. Paula had that with Philip, but she has thrown him aside and now stuck with a husband who never had any intentions on being faithful.
Paula has a housekeeper-maid named Gaby who really cares about her and looks out for her.
Diahann Carroll makes a brief appearance close to the end of the film as a nightclub singer.
Goodbye Again did very well in Europe, but was not well received in America. Anthony Perkins won an award at the Cannes Film Festival for his performance. The previous year Perkins starred as Norman Bates in Alfred Hitchcock’s film Psycho. I think it is a very good movie and at a loss as to why the critics in America would pan it. I would say that Anthony Perkins’ performance stole the show in this film. Even though I thought Philip was one card away from a “full deck”, at least he was consistent and Paula could count on him.
Anthony Perkins and Ingrid Bergman on the set of Goodbye Again.