Off the top of my head, I can think of several gifted interpreters of women on the verge — Nicole Holofcener (Lovely and Amazing), Tamara Jenkins (The Savages) or even Mr. Almodóvar himself — who could have planed away Luce’s viciousness without losing her satirical edge. Understandably, English — who put in the hard labor to bring her baby to term — wanted to direct. But she’s the wrong person for the job, and, willy-nilly, she has reduced one of the wittiest women’s comedies ever made to just another ho-hum chick flick. Lord knows, this summer saw enough of those.
THE WOMEN | Written and directed by DIANE ENGLISH, based on the play by CLARE BOOTHE LUCE and the screenplay by ANITA LOOS and JANE MURFIN | Produced by VICTORIA PEARMAN, MICK JAGGER, BILL JOHNSON and ENGLISH | Released by Picturehouse | Citywide