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Stella Dallas (1937)

Approved | | Drama, Romance | 6 August 1937 (USA)
A low-class woman is willing to do whatever it takes to give her daughter a socially promising future.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Laurel Dallas
...
...
Ed Munn
...
Mrs. Martin
George Walcott ...
Charlie Martin
Ann Shoemaker ...
Miss Margaret Phillibrown
...
Richard Grosvenor
...
Mrs. Grosvenor
Bruce Satterlee ...
Con Morrison
Jimmy Butler ...
Con Morrison - Grown Up
Jack Egger ...
John Morrison
...
Lee Morrison
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Storyline

Working-class Stella Martin marries high-end Stephen Dallas and soon they have a daughter named Laurel. But Stephen's incessant demands of Stella to become what she isn't leads to their eventual separation. Stephen later marries Helen Morrison (his prior fiancée), and Laurel becomes the focus of Stella's life and love. Nothing is too good for Laurel as far as Stella is concerned. Determined to give her all the advantages, she takes Laurel on a trip to an expensive resort where Laurel makes friends with rich kids. After an embarrassing incident, Stella realizes that her daughter would go farther in life without Stella as her mother. Her subsequent sacrifice is shattering. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Sure - I like a good time! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 August 1937 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Als het moederhart spreekt  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The beginning of filming had been delayed because of a makeup artists' and hairdressers' strike by their unions to win recognition of the studios as a guild shop, and there was only a skeleton crew to groom the actors. Barbara O'Neil, who was making her film debut after years on the stage, was particularly upset by having to cross picket lines and be made up behind drawn curtains by Bob Stephanoff, head of the United Artists makeup department. Rattled by this experience and uncertain about film acting, O'Neil often arrived on the set for her scenes feeling very unsure of herself. Aware of her discomfort, Barbara Stanwyck visited O'Neill in her dressing room to offer encouragement. O'Neill would later recall her as "a marvellous, warm-hearted person. I knew it while working with her, and - recently watching a rerun of Stella Dallas - I understood the depth and strength of her work." See more »

Goofs

When Stephen Dallas is first seen in his office, he's typing a letter. You can see that his fingers type several different keys, spaced out on the keyboard (probably in the middle of the middle rows), before he lowers his hands and stops typing to read. Then when he reads, you see that his letter ends with - -. It's not possible for him to have typed - - using the keys he was striking before he lowered his hands. See more »

Quotes

Stella Martin 'Stell' Dallas: I've always been known to have a stack of style!
See more »

Connections

Version of Stella Dallas (1925) See more »

Soundtracks

Bridal Chorus (Here Comes the Bride)
(1850) (uncredited)
from "Lohengrin"
Written by Richard Wagner
In the score for the wedding scene
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Four wet handkerchiefs
19 March 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Barbara Stanwyck is the self-sacrificing "Stella Dallas" in this 1937 film directed by King Vidor and also starring John Boles, Anne Shirley, Barbara O'Neill, and Alan Hale.

The lower-class Stella Martin sets her sights on a successful businessman from an upper-class family, Stephen Dallas. The two marry and have a daughter, Laurel, but over time it becomes apparent that the marriage just can't work. Stella's a girl who just wants to have fun; the stuffy life and staid clothing just aren't for her. Stephen goes to New York to work, leaving Stella and Laurel in Boston. They both adore the little girl. But as she grows up into the lovely Anne Shirley, Stella thinks her slatternly presence may be limiting her daughter's chances for happiness.

This film is a major tear-jerker with an absolutely wonderful performance by Barbara Stanwyck as a warm, outlandishly dressed, and loud woman who nevertheless is devoted to her daughter and wants only the best for her. Anne Shirley is sweet and loving as her daughter, Barbara O'Neill is excellent as Stephen's ex-girlfriend, now widowed, and John Boles gives a gentle performance as the kind Stephen.

"Stella Dallas" will make you cry, but you'll be glad you saw it.


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