Susan Seidelman directed this loose adaptation of Fay Weldon's novel The Life and Loves of a She-Devil concerning the extreme revenge exacted by a dumpy housewife on her philandering husband. Mary Fisher (Meryl Streep) is a best-selling romance novelist of the manner of Danielle Steel or Jackie Collins.
One night at a glamorous dinner party, Ruth (Roseanne Barr), the frumpy housewife of Bob (Ed Begley Jr.), accidentally spills wine over Mary's pink evening gown. Bob rushes to Mary's assistance, they look into each other's eyes, and it is lust at first sight.
After a few clandestine interludes, Bob abandons his wife and his two smart-aleck kids to live with Mary at her palace by the seaside. As a result, Ruth goes into high gear to seek vengeance.
She deposits her kids with Bob and then, with the help of a collection of other abused women -- including Ruth's mother (Sylvia Miles), nursing home attendant Hopper (Linda Hunt), and dim-witted secretary Olivia Honey (Maria Pitillo) -- she systematically sets out to destroy Bob's life.
Bob calls Ruth a she-devil, and Ruth plays the role to the hilt; first she destroys his home life, then his career, then his freedom. And when he has nothing left, she proceeds to haunt and stalk him, bringing Bob to his knees.