Popular and beautiful Fanny Trellis is forced into a loveless marriage with an older man, Jewish banker Job Skeffington, in order to save her beloved brother Trippy from an embezzlement charge, and predictable complications result.
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Olivia de Havilland,
It's 1914 in New York City. Adult brother and sister Trippy Trellis and Fanny Trellis, whose parents are now deceased, were once wealthy, but Trippy squandered away the family fortune, about which no one knows except their cousin George Trellis and their many creditors. Fanny and Trippy still put on the façade to the outside world that they have money. The beautiful Fanny can have any man that she wants to marry, but she sets her sights on Job Skeffington, the son of Russian-Jewish immigrants. Job's wealth was self-made in finance. They met as Trippy was once employed by Job in his brokerage house. Fanny and Job, who is now aware of the Trellis' financial straits, ultimately do get married, much to the consternation of Fanny's many suitors, but most specifically to Trippy, who knows the reason why Fanny married him. Job also realizes that Fanny does not love him, but is unaware of the real reason she agreed to marry him. After their marriage, Fanny's suitors are still around with more... Written by
The character of Fannie is said to have been partly based on the actress Fannie Ward, a silent screen star who in her 40s was still playing young woman. She was still playing young women at age 50 but retired from the screen soon thereafter. See more »
As a measure of the progression of time, a newspaper headline flashes President Warren G. Harding's Washington Disarmament Conference of 1921-22, and stock footage shows the U.S. Capitol Dome with 1940s-era taxicabs pouring up Pennsylvania Avenue. See more »
Good evening, Soames!
Good evening, Mr. Conderley.
Afraid I'm a little early, aren't I?
Miss Trellis wasn't expecting anyone till 8 o'clock.
Well, I thought I'd come a little ahead of time; have a little chat with Miss Fanny.
Sorry, sir; she's still dressing.
All right, I'll wait.
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Bette Davis was an actress. She did not play herself over and over but reinvented herself in each film she made. Mr Skeffington is curiously names after Claude Rains character Mr Skeffington, like Dorothy Arzner's Christopher Strong, a film about Cynthia Darrington ( Katherine Hepburn). Davis plays a Fanny, a woman of less than average intelligence, one afraid of being a woman, mostly because of the attention paid to her by ridiculous suitors, and a life spent in sucking up to them and learning how to get what she wants because of their stupidity. Finally she is truly loved by Mr Skellington (Claude Rains). Nevertheless she still feels embarassed having a baby so she goes back east to hid her growing body. Whatever made her into the fragile and distant creature she truly is underneath her silly flirtations and airs, she realizes in the end the shallowness of her fan club and the true love of the man who loves her no matter what. She conveys the bunglings of a woman caught up in her appearance and the futility of living as an image brilliantly. Well done Bette! You still outshine all actresses living!
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