skip navigation
Divorce American Style

Divorce American Style(1967)

TCM Messageboards
Post your comments here

Remind Me

TCMDb Archive MaterialsView all archives (0)


powered by AFI

After 16 years of marriage, Barbara and Richard Harmon have a luxurious Los Angeles home, an expensive car, and two well-behaved but somewhat precocious sons. Despite the material success of their marriage, Barbara feels that they don't communicate and she seeks out a marriage counselor. This action, coupled with the "advice" of mutual friends, soon leads to bitter arguments that land the Harmons in a divorce court, where an embittered judge grants Barbara virtually everything, leaving Richard with $87.50 a week out of a yearly gross of $25,000. While spending a Sunday with his two boys, Richard meets Nelson Downes, a divorcé frantically trying to eliminate his own alimony payments by finding a new husband for his ex-wife, Nancy. Nelson discusses the situation with Nancy, who likes Richard, and it is agreed that if the arrangement is to be financially feasible Barbara must also have a new mate. The ideal candidate is found in bachelor Big Al Yearling, a successful used car dealer. When Barbara responds to Big Al's courtship, all the combatants (including Nelson's pregnant fiancée, Eunice) meet at a nightclub on the evening before the Harmon divorce is to be made final. During a performance by hypnotist Pat Collins, Barbara permits herself to be mesmerized. After doing an uninhibited striptease on stage, she is ordered by the hypnotist to go into the audience and kiss the man she truly loves. When she plants a resounding smack on the delighted Richard, the Harmon divorce is forgotten. As Barbara and Richard return home to resume their bickering, Nelson, never one to give up easily, desperately tries to interest Nancy in Big Al.