Intentional Interior Design

In the movie Pillow Talk, Jan and Brad share the same party line. Jan is constantly trying to use the phone for her business, but Brad is always on the line singing to different women. Jan is disgusted by Brad’s actions, but one night they meet and fall for each other. Brad disguises his identity and changes his name to Rex, but when Jan finds out, she is very upset. Brad hires Jan to decorate his apartment as a way to try to win her back, but because she is angered by his lies, Jan designs Brad’s apartment in a way she knows he won’t like. In the end, Brad goes to Jan’s apartment and carries her back to his apartment where they end up getting back together.

Brad’s original apartment, according to Jessica Sewell “reflected the crisis in American masculinity,” however Brad’s new apartment represents Brad’s past and present situation with Jan. Brad’s new apartment is filled with different tones of red, for example brighter reds and darker reds like Maroon. Red is often a color that symbolizes love, and as the viewer knows, Brad is deeply in love with Jan. Jan places two distinct animals on the walls of Brad’s apartment, an owl and a giant moose head. The animalistic nature of the giant moose head reveals the animalistic nature of masculinity that Brad demonstrates. Brad goes from one woman to the next without regard for her feelings, similar to how an animal goes for its prey without regard. Owl eyes carry the common connotation of being watched. Jan places a huge owl on the wall to reveal the end to Brad’s secretiveness. Initially Brad was able to hide from Jan that he was the man she despised on the other end of the party line, but now Jan has discovered his secret. The owl eyes represent that Jan knows the truth, she is watching Brad, and no more secrets can be hidden from her. Lastly, Jan places the bed in the center of room, but in order to get in the room you have to go through a curtain of beads. The barrier between the entrance of the room and the bed represents the barrier in Jan and Brad’s relationship. The bed represents when they are together, but they can’t get to it because Jan has lost her trust for Brad.

Music clearly plays a huge part in Brad and Jan’s relationship. Brad and Jan first started talking to each other when Jan discovered Brad’s constant singing to other women. Jan also discovers Brad’s secret when she finds his music notes in the Connecticut home and begins to play the piano. In the final scene at Brad’s apartment, the camera focuses on the Brad’s record player for a few seconds. The record player is a clear symbol of their relationship. In closing, Brad’s room not only reveals his obvious portrayal of masculinity, but also his secret life hidden from Jan.


One thought on “Intentional Interior Design

  1. The essay reveals, in chronological order, the events taking place throughout the movie and creates a vivid picture for the reader to imagine how each event must have taken place in the movie. The detailed description of what Jan does with Brad’s apartment and the accompanied reasons why she must have done it really goes well into the essay and explains the ‘intentional’ in the title.
    The description of Brad’s apartment after Jan gives it a makeover and the description of the movie brings out the ups and downs of Brad’s and jan’s relationship throughout the movie.
    However I think that there should be a better link between the first and second paragraphs as it is seeming a bit abrupt. Apart from that the essay is well researched and thought of.


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