|An Unsuitable Job for a Woman|
|Directed by||Chris Petit|
|Produced by||Peter McKay|
|Written by||P. D. James|
|Edited by||Mick Audsley|
An Unsuitable Job for a Woman is a 1982 British crime film directed by Chris Petit and starring Billie Whitelaw and Pippa Guard. It was entered into the 32nd Berlin International Film Festival. It is based on the 1972 novel of the same name by P. D. James.
After finding her former boss, a private detective, is dead and has left her his agency, Cordelia Gray is asked to investigate the suicide of the man's son. She becomes obsessed with the boy and his suspicious death.
- Billie Whitelaw as Elizabeth Leaming
- Paul Freeman as James Calendar
- Pippa Guard as Cordelia Gray
- Dominic Guard as Andrew Lunn
- Elizabeth Spriggs as Miss Markland
- David Horovitch as Sergeant Maskell
- Dawn Archibald as Isobel
- Bernadette Shortt as Temp
- James Gilbey as Boy
- Kelda Holmes as Girl
- Margaret Wade as Secretary
- Alex Guard as Mark Callender
Goldcrest Films provided £316,000, just under half the budget. Jake Eberts of Goldcrest said he was reluctant to invest in the film but had been persuaded by David Puttnam's enthusiasm for the director. The film was a financial disappointment and Goldcrest made a loss of £120,000.
In a review in The New York Times, Janet Maslin wrote "As befits an English country house mystery, the film has enough wood paneling, wildflowers and overall gentility to appeal to the genre's most ardent fans. But a couple of the film's transitions are abrupt enough to make the head spin, and its final action sequences are woefully perfunctory. The denouement is as disappointing as Mr. Petit's inability to breathe life into Cordelia, her sleuthing and her peculiar obsession." A review in Variety summarized; "Perhaps it is unfair to unravel this tale which is handled from a distance by director Christopher Petit robbing it of a more forceful narration, timing and revelation."
- BRITISH PRODUCTION 1981 Moses, Antoinette. Sight and Sound; London Vol. 51, Iss. 4, (Fall 1982): 258.
- "Berlinale: 1982 Programme". berlinale.de. Archived from the original on 12 October 2010. Retrieved 11 November 2010.
- Eberts, Jake; Illott, Terry (1990). My indecision is final. Faber and Faber. p. 100.
- Maslin, Janet (26 April 1985). "Film: 'An Unsuitable Job for a Woman". The New York Times. New York. Retrieved 14 April 2017.
- Variety Review: 'An Unsuitable Job for a Woman'