Tuesday, July 7, 2009

I'll Cry Tomorrow: Catch a Fallen Star

I usually pan for Netflix gold by searching the actors, directors or writers I’ve liked in other movies. By that measure I have no idea how “I’ll Cry Tomorrow” ended up in my queue. I knew so little about the movie that at first I thought it was a thinly veiled biopic about Judy Garland. But the synopsis on the DVD envelope (always worth reading) informed me that it’s the true story of Lillian Roth, another talented singer/actress. But the plot is familiar. Lillian's mother pushes her along from audition to audition. She controls every aspect of her life, keeping her from developing any real relationships outside this show business bubble. As Lillian grows up, she begins to realize what her mother has been doing and decides to take control of her own life. One of her first emancipating steps, marrying her childhood sweetheart, goes horribly wrong when he suddenly dies before the wedding. To ease the pain, she turns to alcohol, followed by a couple of bad relationships which leads to more alcohol, until she ends up on the street. The movie can get a little melodramatic in parts, which is probably just its age showing. Regardless, Susan Hayward's portrayal of Roth, which earned an Oscar nomination, is quite good. And that makes “I’ll Cry Tomorrow” worth putting in your queue today. My review from Twitter: An ambitious stage mother pushes Susan Hayward to the top where a bottle of booze waits to pull her back down. 7.5 (out of 10)

"I'll Cry Tomorrow"

Released: 1955

Rating: NR

Length: 117 minutes

Cast: Susan Hayward, Richard Conte, Eddie Albert, Jo Van Fleet

Director: Daniel Mann

Genre(s): Drama, Adaptation, Biopic

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