Sunday in New York

Her character in “Sunday in New York” is just that, but this being before the sexual revolution and the loosening of the MPAA, the word is never uttered. “Beginner” just has to do.

Anyway, this “beginner” asks her airliner pilot brother, Adam (Cliff Robertson), how long she’s expected to hold out and still keep the man she loves interested in her. To ease her fears, he tells Eileen that he’s a “beginner,” too.

Oh, he’s sooooo totally lying. He leads quite the playboy lifestyle. In fact, Eileen’s unannounced arrival to his swank bachelor apartment in the Big Apple serves as an interruption to his planned morning tryst with a hot-to-trot redhead named (aptly, one presumes) Mona (Jo Morrow).

Their ever-foiled efforts in finding a time and place to knock boots — coupled with what Eileen later does to a creepy stranger (Rod Taylor) she meets on the bus — figure so heavily in the plot, that if this ever gets remade, I vote for calling it “Blue-Balled in New York.”

As with virtually every romantic comedy of that era, “Sunday” was adapted for the screen from a play, and looks, sounds and feels like it. That’s not necessarily a bad thing — after all, Adam’s mod pad is bright and “Barefoot in the Park”-ish — but conversations come too extended and the physical comedy punctuated with brass cues on the soundtrack. The second half hinges on a misunderstanding both established and developed no smarter than any given episode of “Three’s Company.”

It’s cute, with game performances from all (including Robert Culp), but a bit on the slight side. Warner Archives’ MOD DVD looks great in a remastered edition. —Rod Lott

Rod Lott

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