Susan Trexel is a wealthy socialite, who while vacationing in Europe undergoes a religious transformation. On her return to America, Susan takes on the task of spreading her new found ... See full summary »
Susan Trexel is a wealthy socialite, who while vacationing in Europe undergoes a religious transformation. On her return to America, Susan takes on the task of spreading her new found religious experience with her closest friends - only to drive them crazy. Meanwhile, her husband Barrie, and daughter Blossom yearn for a stable family life. Barrie will even become sober, hoping that Susan will heed her own advice, and save their marriage and family. Written by
For all us Joan Crawford fans, there's lots to like in "Susan and God." Her costumes by Adrian are fabulously outrageous, she delivers rapid-fire dialog, and she's supported by a A-list cast of actors, including Fredric March and Rita Hayworth. Crawford makes one of her best entrances ever in this movie, perched dramatically on the bow of a speedboat as it whisks her into the country estate of a socialite friend. It's an unforgettable image of glamour, grace and style. She looks fantastic throughout the movie, certainly at the height of her beauty -- more than enough to keep any Crawford fan glued to the screen.
But on the downside, there's tons of tedious dialog and far too many dull plot machinations from an overcrowded cast. There's also a cloying and obnoxious performance from Rita Quigley as Crawford's neglected teen daughter. One brilliant highlight is the cameo performance by Constance Collier as Crawford's religious guru. Collier -- much spoken about earlier in the movie -- appears late in the second act to demonstrate the power of her movement. Unfortunately, although this vehicle worked on the New York stage, but filmed here it really left at least this viewer cold.
Director Cukor appeared to be way out of his element, relating this story of a society woman's religious awakening -- a topic seldom handled in Hollywood. Everyone's motivations remain unclear, especially Crawford's as the intrusive Susan, who takes it upon herself to direct everyone's life to the religion that she has embraced. Poor Fredric March fares no better as Susan's estranged alcoholic husband.
At nearly two hours, "Susan and God" works well as a sedative, lulling audiences into a deep and restful sleep.
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