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Book Vs Movie: "The Stepford Wives" (1975)
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Book Vs Movie

The Stepford Wives 

Ira Levin’s Terrifying 1972 Novel Vs The 1975 William Goldman’s Screenplay (Or is it?)

Also, the really bad take by Roger Ebert in 1975 (and the sequel!)

The Margos are heading back to the Burbs with our long 70s flowing hair and obsession with waxing kitchen floors in the Ira Levin classic novel The Stepford Wives that was turned into a film in 1975 and directed by Bryan Forbes. Stepford, Connecticut is the fictional setting where families move in and within four months–the wives turn into robots who love, sex, cooking, and cleaning 

Joanna Eberhart leaves her beloved NYC for Stepford because her husband wants to experience life in such a surreally lovely setting. He also joins the local men’s group and stays every night. Joanna knows something is messed up but can’t figure out exactly what is going on to the women of Stepford–until its too late.  

The 1975 adaptation did modestly well and had some bad reviews by top critics like Paulene Kael and Roger Ebert (he was a bit of a sexist, y’all!) The screenplay was adapted by past Book Vs Movie subject William Goldman (The Princess Bride) and directed by Bryan Forbes who chose his wife as one of the first Stepford wives we meet–which therefore changed the proposed costuming of miniskirts to modest dresses. Many people think is a mistake in the telling of the story. They are wrong and we discuss that in the podcast.

The film was nightmare fuel to so many kids who saw it on TV in the 70s and 80s and revisiting the book brought back was such a fun treat (we originally covered this in 2016.) 

So which did we prefer between the book and the movie? Have a listen and find out. 

In this ep the Margos discuss:

Clips used

  • The Stepford Wives have a “consciousness-raising” discussion
  • “The Stepford Wives” trailer (1975)
  • Bobbie meets Joanna
  • Joanna finds out what really happens to the women
  • Music: Michael Small

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Margo D. @BrooklynFitChik

Margo P. @ShesNachoMama 

Check out this NEW episode of Book Vs. Movie!