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Carnival dancer Lane Bellamy finds herself stranded in a southern town ruled by corrupt political boss Titus Semple. Lane becomes romantically involved with sheriff Fielding Carlisle, a weakling whose career is being driven by Titus. Seeing Lane as a liability to his own political ambitions, Titus mounts a campaign to get her driven out of town. She finds she can't get a job and even gets arrested on a trumped-up morals charge. Released from jail, Lane finds work as a "hostess" at Lutie-Mae's road house, where she meets Dan Reynolds, another member of the town's political machine. They marry and move to a home on Flamingo Road, the town's social pinnacle. Their marriage is soon marked by scandal when a drunken Carlisle visits Lane at home one evening and shoots himself. Written by
Daniel Bubbeo <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Flamingo Road is not the best Joan Crawford film ever done. But it surely is one of the most entertaining with a few unforgettable characters in the film. No wonder it got picked to be the basis for a night time soap opera in the Eighties.
Sydney Greenstreet is one of those larger than life characters in every sense of the word. His southern county sheriff dominates this film. I would have to say it is my third favorite Greenstreet role, next to The Maltese Falcon and The Hucksters. Joan Crawford good as she is loses all the joint scenes when she's on the screen with Greenstreet.
Joan's a carnival girl stranded in Greenstreet's town and picked up by Greenstreet's deputy Zachary Scott. Greenstreet has big political plans for Scott which include a proper marriage with some modern version of Melanie Hamilton. Virginia Huston's the girl he has in mind.
After Crawford doesn't take Greenstreet's advice and leave town, he has her framed on a prostitution rap. After doing a six month stretch Crawford is understandably wanting vengeance. She takes a job at a road house run by Gladys George where a lot of the state bigwigs meet and enjoy all forms of pleasurable relaxation.
The characters in Flamingo Road jump right out at you, they really were made for a night time soap opera. Of course Crawford is great as she and new husband and ally David Brian gives her a new found respectability. The best portrayal in the film besides Crawford and Greenstreet goes to Gladys George. She's a southern version of the Texas Guinan like character she played in The Roaring Twenties.
If you like soap opera and revenge this is the film for you.
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