"A Woman Under the Influence" is what you would call awful. Terrible. So reprimanding that you're trapped in your seat in disbelief that it could get any worse, but yet it does. Let me save you your time and your money. Despite whether you are a Cassavetes fan, a Rowlands fan or a Falk fan, save yourself the aggravation.John Cassavetes' story starts without much introduction and ends without development. He has his wife Gena Rowlands in a very ungratifyng role as the housewife of Peter Falk, parents of three. He's a public works employee, fixing whatever goes wrong. (If his homelife is any indication of how he does his job, he doesn't do it very well.) Rowlands, meanwhile, is going nuts.
In actuality, everyone is going nuts. While watching it, you too, will go nuts. These thinly lined characters are terribly written. They aren't even two-dimensional. The "conflicts" or "occurrences" during the running time are stated, and then over-amplified as if it were some exaggerated amateur student movie. Nothing is believable, it's all superficially blown to the extreme edges. I really don't know see how Rowlands is deemed a nutcase beyond that all the characters say she is and that she makes some obnoxious, silly air noises with her mouth. Maybe that was the point --that she really wasn't going nuts-- but what an inept and stupid way to prove it.
Rowlands is simply ridiculous. She looks awful. It's an unbearable, yucky performance of major reputation. I wasn't involved with it, yet still I wanted to bury my head in embarrassment. Falk's performance is mostly indifferent, although it becomes absurd any time he works up his temper.
"A Woman Under the Influence" feels as though it was all thrown together just to put something out there. This isn't a movie, it's a torturous hell. Cinematic experiences rarely get worse than this. The knee-jerk, or neckless cinematography (in other words, it's all over the place) is horrendous, unprofessional and junkie. A mess. And the two-a-half-hour running time is no less ludicrous and a feat on its own.Final Verdict: F.