• Publication date: September 1, 2011

What Lies Beneath Is the Making of Nightmares The Stepford Wives: Welcome To Connecticut

�The Stepford Wives� novel and its first film adaptation was a product its era, heavily influenced by the rapidly changing status of women in the United States, in addition to the popularization of feminist theory in academia, politics, and entertainment.

�The Stepford Wives� novel and its first film adaptation was a product its era, heavily influenced by the rapidly changing status of women in the United States, in addition to the popularization of feminist theory in academia, politics, and entertainment.

The wives of Stepford represented the first generation of liberated women, who were not merely housewives subservient to their husbands, but breadwinners in their own right.

While women in the 1975 adaptation were up and coming executives with jealous husbands, Oz�s modern take portrays the wives as already successful, wealthy executives, who outshine their husbands economically and in many cases intellectually.

Joanna Eberhart is a successful television producer who suffers a nervous breakdown after losing her highly lucrative job. Joanna and her husband, Walter decide to relocate to the gated, seemingly perfect suburb of Stepford.

Prior to Joanna�s firing, Walter worked underneath his wife for the same television station; out of respect (and hinting to the household hierarchy) Walter retires in unison with Joanna�s dismissal.

Joanna and Walter are somewhat shocked by their new neighbors, all of whom seem to resemble the 1950s, American nuclear family with vomit-inducing accuracy.

Each woman, at all times is outfitted in a beautiful dress; when they are not exercising in the gym, they are cooking deserts in the kitchen; at all times they are ready and willing to fulfill their husbands� sexual desires, even at 3 in the afternoon.

Interestingly none of the families seem to be employed, yet they all live lavishly with unlimited amounts of cash.

There is something strange about the men as well. When the husbands are not making love to their wives or eating their extravagant meals, they are at the neighborhood men�s club not only joking and playing sports, but also participating in something a bit more sinister.

Joanna is not the only member of the community who feels awkward. Novelist Bobbie Markowitz and gay neighbor Roger Bart fail to meet Stepford�s societal norms: neither wears fancy clothing, works out, nor obsesses over pleasing their lovers.

One day, when Bobbie transforms into a standard Stepford wife, Joanna is forced to investigate the inner workings of this frighteningly perfect suburb.

Like its 1975 counterpart, 2004�s �Stepford Wives� utilizes its plot to eventually put forth a larger social message: that perfection, especially other individuals� perceptions of it, are dehumanizing and very far from attractive in the long run.

This movie is rated Rated PG-13 for sexual content, thematic material and language.

Year: 2004

Runtime: 93 mins

Genre: Thriller, Sci-Fi, Comedy

Starring:

Christopher Walken

Nicole Kidman

Glenn Close

Bette Midler

Matthew Broderick

Jon Lovitz

David Marshall Grant

Lorri Bagley

Roger Bart

Faith Hill

Directed by: Frank Oz