Revision: Pillow Talk

Some people may say that the place where you live is a direct reflection of your personality and ideals. Throughout history people have had the option to decorate their personal spaces in any way that they want, whether that be dark and gloomy, happy and bright, or any combination in between. In the 20th and 21st centuries it became obvious, through movies and TV shows, that people have myriad different ways in which they like to decorate their spaces. The 1959 movie Pillow Talk is a perfect illustration of how people like to decorate their apartments in different ways based on the personality of the person living there and whom the space is decorated for.

Pillow Talk is a romantic comedy movie about a man, Brad Allen, and a woman, Jan Morrow, who have to share a party line – in other words, their phone lines are connected and can’t be used simultaneously. Jan is an interior decorator who needs to use the phone for business but Brad seems to always be using the phone to talk to his many girlfriends. Brad sees Jan at a restaurant and decides that wants to date her; but, knowing that she does not like him because of the party line, he decides to pose as a tourist from Texas named Rex Stetson. Throughout the movie they date until Jan finds out the truth. She then proceeds to redecorate Brad’s bachelor pad to the point where it looks repulsive. When Brad sees his apartment he confesses to Jan and they realize their love for each other.

The apartments and how they are decorated are a very important part of the movie and show a lot about the differences between Jan and Brad. Before watching the movie Pillow Talk, without a doubt I would have said the only consideration in decorating an apartment is the person living there, however my answer has changed slightly because of Brad Allen’s apartment. Brad attracts girls to his apartment with his charm and charisma but he keeps them there with his gadgets and manly décor. Brad’s apartment shows that the way an apartment is decorated is not necessarily just for the person living there but also for other people who will see the apartment. Brad’s manly bachelor pad with many gadgets would give off very different vibes if decorated with pastel colors. His sexuality would have seemingly been challenged if light blue was his favorite color and he decorated his apartment in that color. In this way Brad may have felt as if he must decorate his apartment to be manly so he wouldn’t be judged. The apartment is the epitome of a bachelor pad and Brad plays up this fact with an elaborate switch that puts on a record, locks the door, turns down the lights, and pulls out a bed. As a result, the bachelor pad shows who Brad wants to be, not necessarily who he is.

On the other hand, Jan Morrow’s apartment is a reflection of herself. As a single working woman in New York City, Jan does not necessarily care who is coming into the apartment; she is more interested in decorating the apartment in a way that makes her happy. The apartment has a pastel color scheme, light curtains, many flowers, and colorful throw pillows. Jan’s decorations show how feminine she is as a person and since she is an interior decorator she is able to show off her personality well through the décor in her apartment.

Jan and Brad’s respective apartments are decorated in very different ways. Some of the explanations for the ways people decorate may include gender stereotypes, purpose, and personal ideas. As a result Jan and Brad have decorated their apartments from completely different perspectives. Jan’s apartment is decorated for herself and who she is while Brad’s apartment is decorated for others and who he would like to be.

One thought on “Revision: Pillow Talk

  1. You write clearly and precisely. I would still like to have a better idea of whom you’re talking to and why this movie provides a better example than anything else. Also, I get the sense that you’re referring to Jessica Sewell’s article: why not cite her and engage with her ideas more completely?


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