The Chapman Report (1962) - Plot Summary Poster


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  • Based on the best-selling novel by Irving Wallace that was inspired by the Kinsey Report on the sexual mores of suburban women, the film follows the personal (read sexual) lives of four women (Claire Bloom, Jane Fonda, Shelley Winters and Glynis Johns) with four separate sexual hangups, ranging from frigidity to nymphomania. Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. plays a researcher who becomes entangled with Fonda, the young woman suffering from emotional frigidity.

  • The sexual and romantic lives of four women residing in the upscale San Francisco suburb of Briarwood are presented against the backdrop of Dr. George Chapman and his associates coming to town to compile data through anonymous interviews for his sex survey and resulting report on sex and the American woman, especially as it relates to marriage. The first woman is Sarah Garnell who is in a conventional twelve year marriage where her and her husband Frank Garnell's day-to-day lives overtake any notion of romance, which she still craves. As such, she, unknown to him, has fallen into the arms of another man, her community theater director, Fred Linden. In the process, she may mistake sex for love. The second woman is divorcée Naomi Shields, who believes the answer to her loneliness and depression is to have sex with any man who will sleep with her, however indiscriminate the sex or dangerous the situation may be. The third woman is Teresa Harnish married to Geoffrey Harnish, the two who like to think that they are the epitome of the textbook excitedly happily married couple. Teresa changes her mind only because she believes during her interview for the sex survey that Dr. Chapman sounded bored by her answers. So Teresa goes searching for that excitement. And the fourth woman is young widow Kathleen Barclay who was unable to consummate her two year marriage to test pilot Boy Barclay despite she believing she truly loving him and so wanting to please him. Kathleen has moved back into the home of her domineering father, Alan Roby. Because of Boy's assertions to her, Kathleen believes she is frigid. As he begins to fall for her, Chapman's associate, Paul Radford, who conducted the interview with her and learned of her identity out of circumstance, tries to convince her that her inability to have sex with Boy was a manifestation of other issues in her life.



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