Jack Lemmon: What Movies to Start With

Roxana Anton

Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain

If you are looking for smart comedies, you will find plenty in the Classic Hollywood years, between the forties and the eighties.

Due to my writing activity, I've been seeing films from the forties and the fifties, so I can recommend some.

It's up to us to discover the best pictures and the best actors from the past, enjoy them and also learn something.

Today I want to bring to your attention one of the funniest, cute actors that have ever populated Hollywood sets and the screens of the entire world: Jack Lemmon, as we all know him.

John Uhler Lemmon III was born in an elevator in Newton, Massachusetts, a suburb of Boston, where his father was the president of a donut company. (source: Wikipedia)

After attending Harvard University, Lemmon enlisted in the United States Navy. After completing his military service, he began working as an actor in theater, radio, and television. (source: Wikipedia)

He became one of the favorite actors of director Billy Wilder, starring in his films Some Like It Hot, The Apartment, Irma La Douce, and Avanti. (source: Wikipedia)

Lemmon received the Oscar for his supporting role in the film Mister Roberts (1955), and the lead role in the film Save the Tiger (1973).

He was also nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor for his roles in Some Like It Hot (1959), The Apartment (1960), Days of Wine and Roses (1962), The China Syndrome (1979), Tribute (1980), and the controversial Missing - 1982.

In 1988 he was awarded the "Lifetime Achievement Award" by the American Film Institute (AFI).

Being one of the most interesting actors in Hollywood's classic era, let's have a look at the top three movies you can start with, to understand the work and career of this remarkable actor.

Jack Lemmon - The Apartment. Source: Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain

Mister Roberts is an American comedy-drama film from 1956, based on the 1946 novel and Broadway play.

The film was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Sound, with Jack Lemmon winning the award for Best Supporting Actor. (source: Wikipedia)

Some Like It Hot, the famous 1959 American romantic comedy directed, produced, and co-written by Billy Wilder, stars Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon.

This is, for sure, one of the most delightful movies ever, especially for the plot and those amazing roles played by Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis, that will probably always remain in history.

And what to say about the charming, glamorous, and sweet appearance of Marylin Monroe, her iconic style that classifies her among the world's biggest stars ever.

The movie is considered, by some critics, to be the best comedy film ever made, and topped a lot of charts.

In 1989, the Library of Congress selected it as one of the first 25 films for preservation in the United States National Film Registry for being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant". (source: Wikipedia)

It was voted as the top comedy film by the American Film Institute on their list on AFI's 100 Years...100 Laughs poll in 2000 and was selected as the best comedy of all time by BBC in 2017. (source: Wikipedia)

The Apartment is a 1960 comedy-drama film that won an Oscar in 1961 for Best Picture of the Year. Starring Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine, it's probably one of the best movies that you will ever see from those years, so make sure to put it on your must-see list, as it is worth every minute.

Again directed by the notorious Billy Wilder, the story follows C.C. "Bud" Baxter (Lemmon), an insurance clerk who, in the hope of climbing the corporate ladder, lets more senior coworkers use his apartment, but this will cause him lots of trouble in the end. (Wikipedia)

Bud is attracted to Fran Kubelik (MacLaine). He does not know she is having an affair with his immediate boss, Sheldrake (MacMurray). (Wikipedia)

The Apartment was nominated for ten Academy Awards and won five, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Screenplay.

The film is today considered by critics to be one of the best in all times.

There are many other enjoyable Jack Lemmon films, so make sure to give him a chance on your must-see list.

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