A Guide for the Married Man – on how to cheat on your wife, and not get caught! One philandering husband coaches his pal on how to get away with it … or not!
A Guide for the Married Man (1967) starring Walter Matthau, Robert Morse
The basic premise of A Guide for the Married Man is that faithful husband and father (Walter Matthau) finds himself lusting after other women. Despite his loving wife being quite beautiful, loving, and attentive. So his “friend” and neighbor decides to coach him on how to cheat on his wife … And not get caught.
Frankly, as a happily married man for 30 years, I strongly dislike the premise. But two things make this comedy hilarious:
- The various vignettes, demonstrating what happens when things go wrong.. Starring some of the funnies comedians and clowns of the day, And without exception, they’re laugh out loud funny!
- The ending, where the “expert” is finally caught by his wife. As the protagonist is at a motel with a lovely, and willing, divorcee …. And he realizes how much he truly loves his wife. How much it would hurt her. And he chooses not to give into temptation. Then, his “pal” is caught — at the same motel!
Gene Kelly directs this delicious farce that finds faithful husband Paul Manning (Walter Matthau) contemplating stepping out on wife Ruth (Inger Stevens). To get lessons in infidelity, Paul consults a philandering pal (Robert Morse), whose advice plays out in a series of hilarious vignettes. Includes appearances by Art Carney, Jayne Mansfield, Sid Caesar, Phil Silvers, Lucille Ball, Carl Reiner, and Jack Benny; features the hit title song performed by The Turtles. 91 min. Widescreen; Soundtrack: English. Region Free
Cast of characters
- Walter Matthau (Cactus Flower) … Paul Manning. The protagonist, whom Ed is trying tutor on successful adultery. But, he truly loves his wife & child …
- Inger Stevens (The World, the Flesh, and the Devil) … Ruth Manning. Paul’s lovely, loving, supportive wife.
- Sue Ane Langdon (UHF) … Mrs. Johnson
- Jackie Russell (The Cheyenne Social Club) … Miss Harris
- Robert Morse (How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying) … Ed Stander. The “expert” philanderer, who is trying to teach Paul how to cheat on his wife. And, not get caught. He apparently believes that his cheating makes his marriage better. And his wife would appreciate it, if she knew! Which, in the end, is revealed to be self-deception. He does introduce all of the comedy vignettes as lessons for Paul to learn from.
- Claire Kelly (What Ever Happened to Aunt Alice?) … Harriet Stander. Ed’s wife. She’s also beautiful, kind, and loving. And in the end, she catches her cheating husband red-handed.
- Art Carney (Going in Style) … Joe X. He instigates a fight with his wife (Chicken for dinner? Again?) so she’ll tell him to “go somewhere else” — and he does! And the next day, he calls her to apologize for “the fight”. And set up for the next time.
- Lucille Ball (The Facts of Life) … Mrs. Joe X.
- Eve Brent (The Green Mile; Garfield) … Joe X’s Blowsy Blonde
Losing her Bra
- Terry-Thomas (How to Murder Your Wife; Munster, Go Home!)
- Jayne Mansfield (Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter)
Woman : [after losing her bra in “the heat of battle”] It’s all right, Tiger. I’ve got another one at home.
Man : That is not what’s worrying me. What is worrying me is my wife coming home and finding it.
Woman : She’ll just think it’s hers.
Man : [withering glare] Don’t be ridiculous.
Breaking up’s hard to do
- Jack Benny (To Be or Not to Be; The Jack Benny Show) … Philandering husband
- Virginia Wood … Bubbles
Jack’s character is telling his mistress, Bubbles, that things are going to be different from now on. His wife’s found out, and she’s going to take him for everything he’s got! He even wants to sell the mink coat he gave her! But Bubbles isn’t interested — now that the money’s gone. So she leaves …. And it’s all been a setup, as he’s about to move on to his next mistress!
Deny, deny, deny
- Ann Morgan Guilbert (The Dick Van Dyke Show; The Nanny) … Wife
- Joey Bishop (Ocean’s 11 (1960); The Joey Bishop Show) … Husband
The wife literally walks in on her husband in bed with another woman! But … despite the evidence of her eyes, he denies everything — and he makes the bed, and his adultery partner leaves. And the poor wife is doubting the evidence of her own eyes.
- Aline Towne … Mousey Man’s Wife
- Marvin Brody … Taxi Driver
- Majel Barrett (Star Trek: The Motion Picture; Westworld (1973)) … Mrs. Fred V.
- Marian Mason … Mrs. Rance G.
- Tommy Farrell … Rance G.’s Hanger-On
- Linda Harrison (Planet of the Apes) … Miss Stardust
- Jason Wingreen … Mr. Johnson
- Pat Becker … Party Guest
- Fred Holliday … Party Guest
- Robert Patten … Party Guest
- Dee Carroll … Party Guest
- Ray Montgomery (The Las Vegas Story) … Party Guest
- Jackie Joseph (Who’s Minding The Mint?) … Janet Brophy
- Heather Young … Girl with Megaphone
- Evelyn King … Female Plaintiff
- Nancy DeCarl … Woman with Baby
- Warrene Ott … Woman with Gun
- Michael Romanoff … Romanoff’s Maitre’d
- Karen Arthur … Lady Dinner Partner
- Damian London … Lone Male Diner
- Chanin Hale (The Night They Raided Minsky’s; The Red Skelton Hour) … Miss Crenshaw
- Julie Tate … Woman in Bed
- George N. Neise (Valley of Hunted Men; The Red Skelton Hour) … Man in Bed
- Tim Herbert … Shoe Clerk
- Patricia Sides … Mau Mau Dancer
- Pat McCaffrie … Motel Clerk
- Jimmy Cross (The Amazing Colossal Man) … Mr. Brown
- Elaine Devry (Diary of a Madman; The Atomic Kid) … Jocelyn Montgomery