AND GOD CREATED WOMAN
US, 1987, 100 minutes, Colour.
Rebecca de Mornay, Vincent Spano, Frank Langella, Donovan Leitch.
Directed by Roger Vadim.
And God Created Woman was originally a French sex drama comedy, made by Roger Vadim, which made a star and sex symbol of the young Brigitte Bardot. Thirty years later, he updates and translates the plot to the United States. What might have been exotic and objectionable in the '50s seems rather commonplace in the late '80s and rather flat. Rebecca de Mornay (Risky Business, Trip to Bountiful, Runaway Train) has the Bardot role. Frank Langella is the would-be governor. Vincent Spano is the young worker who marries the heroine to get her out of prison.
The setting is Texas, there is an atmosphere of prisons, political campaigns - and rock and roll. There are also a few scenes of nudity - much less startling than scenes from other films of the period. One wonders why Vadim bothered to remake his '50s film.
1. The impact of the original film? The decision for a remake? Update? Translation to the United States? Interest? Enjoyment?
2. Texas locations? Prisons, the road, city, society, rock and roll world? The musical score, the staging of the songs?
3. The title, the focus on women, relationships with men, sexuality?
4. Robyn and her getting out of jail, hitching a ride, the irony of being taken back? The encounter with Billy? Her discovery that James Tiernan had taken her back? Singing in prison, relationship with prisoners, the guards? The question of parole? Marrying? Propositioning Billy, the wedding, the financial deal? Getting out, going home, discovering the family? Not sleeping in the same room? Her trying to further her career? The brother with the band? Playing, demonstrations? Meeting Tiernan, friendship, playing pool? His wife? The night together? His wanting to get her away from his campaign? The clash with Billy, the question of the family? The irony of their being used in photographs for the political campaign? Her realising Billy had helped her, the reconciliation? Her decision to play at the dinner? Her not revealing anything? The success of her record, reconciliation with Billy?
5. Billy, worker, the sexual encounter with Robyn? His agreeing to marry her? Not taking the money? Wanting her to be a wife, his demands? His brother and his son? Family sequences, used by the publicity department, the photos? His sexual encounter with the other girl? His love for Robyn, changing his attitude towards what he wanted in a wife? Helping her to play? The reconciliation?
6. James Tiernan, the limousine, the encounter with Robyn, taking her back? Helping with the parole board? The campaign? Relationship with his wife? The night with Robyn? The danger of publicity with her? His wariness about the dinner? Her playing, his making sure that she didn't go back to jail again?
7. The brother, his place in the family, the band? The young son, his dislike of Robyn, getting to like her, accompanying her on the visit to Tiernan?
8. The guards, the prisoners, friendships? The band?
9. An ordinary story of a young woman, ordinary people in Texas, prisons, family, music? - less exotic than Roger Vadim's intention with his film?