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Mildred Pierce (1945)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir | 20 October 1945 (USA)
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A hard-working mother inches towards disaster as she divorces her husband and starts a successful restaurant business to support her spoiled daughter.

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(screenplay), (novel)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Jo Ann Marlowe ...
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Storyline

Mildred Pierce dotes on her daughters while husband Bert looks to Maggie Binderhof for affection. They separate leaving Mildred to raise the girls on her own. Elder daughter Veda goads her mother about their lack of money and in response Mildred proposes opening a small restaurant. Realtor Wally Fay advises her while making numerous rebuffed passes and introduces her to Monte Baragon whose property becomes the first of a chain of restaurants. Mildred has an affair with Monte. Meanwhile, money-hungry Veda pretends to be pregnant by wealthy Ted Forrester in order to bilk his family of $10,000. Mildred tears up the check, is slapped by Veda, and orders her daughter to leave. After time away, Mildred returns to find Veda singing in a cheap club. Veda will return only if Mildred promises her desired (Monte's) lifestyle, so Mildred agrees to marry Monte in exchange for a third of her businesses. It soon becomes clear that something is going on between Veda and Monte. Mildred learns of this ... Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A mother's love leads to murder. See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 October 1945 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Alma em Suplício  »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,453,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Because of script problems some of the film was improvised by the actors together with Michael Curtiz. See more »

Goofs

In the opening scene where Mildred drives up to Monte Beragon's beach house, the top of one of the crew's head can be seen on the passenger's side. When he realizes that they've started shooting, he quickly ducks down. See more »

Quotes

Veda: You think just because you made a little money you can get a new hairdo and some expensive clothes and turn yourself into a lady. But you can't, because you'll never be anything but a common frump whose father lived over a grocery store and whose mother took in washing.
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Crazy Credits

The opening credits are presented with a background ocean scene that "washes" the credits on the screen. See more »

Connections

Featured in Los Angeles Plays Itself (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

It Can't Be Wrong
(uncredited)
Music by Max Steiner
Played on the phonograph and at various times in the score
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User Reviews

 
Melodramatic and proud of it...
17 March 2002 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

The story that unfolds in Mildred Pierce is complicated and dark, and at its darkest, is a chilling portrait of a mother so devoted to her children (well, child, really) that she would go to any and all lengths for them. Although some of the situations and scenes suffer from the passage of time (the modern audience in the cinema, myself included, couldn't help laughing at some of the more ludicrous things said/done), the film as a whole worked, mostly on the strength of the performances.

Joan Crawford won her only Oscar for her role, and it was well-deserved--she held the film together with a confident performance that ranged from charming and sassy, to desperate and almost frightening. The final scenes of the film, especially, captured Mildred at her most pathetic, and Crawford looked utterly despondent in the telephone scene. Ann Blyth is utterly convincing as the spoilt, deeply disturbed Veda, narcissistic and unrelentingly manipulative of her mother. And the best supporting performance had to come from Eve Arden, who played Mildred's friend Ida--Arden saunters across the screen, stealing scenes left and right, before disappearing from view again. She was excellent!

The film is well worth the watch--not brilliant, but definitely very good. I also like the story-telling technique and the direction (the director made quite clever and frequent use of shadows and mirrors), and it's good that the darkness and melodrama was frequently mitigated by the well-written dialogue. 8/10.


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Recent Posts
Delete Your Post Mildred Pierce-style! Lukerdog
Say something nice about Veda harry-47
Best line in the movie..... Asquani
why was Mildred so blind about Veda? PSVillas
Wally was a hottie ! LadyLion
Anything Redeeming in Veda? Alix1929
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