6.6/10
894
23 user 6 critic

The Actress (1953)

Former seaman Clinton Jones now works at a lowly job. His daughter Ruth wants to become an actress. Clinton gets fired and Ruth rejects the advances of Fred Whitmarsh. Her father gives her ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(screen play), (from: her stage play "Years Ago")
Reviews

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Simmons is magnetic as Charlotte, her lovely, delicate face reflecting the inner turmoil of a woman battling for sanity after she walks out of a mental institution.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Stars: Jean Simmons, Dan O'Herlihy, Rhonda Fleming
Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A young woman visits Paris with her brother only to discover the following morning he has gone missing and the hotel staff have no recollection of his presence.

Directors: Antony Darnborough, Terence Fisher
Stars: Jean Simmons, Dirk Bogarde, David Tomlinson
Young Bess (1953)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

The early life of Elizabeth I, from her childhood until her accession to the throne of England in 1558.

Director: George Sidney
Stars: Jean Simmons, Stewart Granger, Deborah Kerr
Angel Face (1953)
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Ambulance driver Frank Jessup is ensnared in the schemes of the sensuous but dangerous Diane Tremayne.

Director: Otto Preminger
Stars: Robert Mitchum, Jean Simmons, Mona Freeman
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A middle-aged woman walks out on her husband and family in an desperate attempt to find herself.

Director: Richard Brooks
Stars: Jean Simmons, John Forsythe, Shirley Jones
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

In early 1900s England, a maid tries to blackmail her master into romancing her when she discovers he murdered his wife.

Director: Arthur Lubin
Stars: Stewart Granger, Jean Simmons, Bill Travers
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Following her father's death, a British teen-aged heiress goes to live with her guardian uncle who is broke and scheming to murder his niece for her vast inheritance.

Director: Charles Frank
Stars: Jean Simmons, Derrick De Marney, Katina Paxinou
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Victor and Hillary are down on their luck to the point that they allow tourists to take guided tours of their castle. But Charles Delacro, a millionaire oil tycoon, visits, and takes a ... See full summary »

Director: Stanley Donen
Stars: Cary Grant, Deborah Kerr, Robert Mitchum
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In the early 1900's Tennessee, a loving family undergoes the shock of the father's sudden, accidental death. The widow and her young son must endure the heartache of life following the ... See full summary »

Director: Alex Segal
Stars: Jean Simmons, Robert Preston, Pat Hingle
Pat and Mike (1952)
Comedy | Romance | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Pat is a women's sports sensation unless her fiancé is around. Her new shady manager Mike keeps them apart and develops feelings for her.

Director: George Cukor
Stars: Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Aldo Ray
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Jean Simmons (a school teacher) takes a secretarial job in a nightclub. The two club owners quibble about a lot, including her. Unfortunately, she develops an interest for the partner who disapproves of her employment at the club.

Director: Robert Wise
Stars: Jean Simmons, Paul Douglas, Anthony Franciosa
Elmer Gantry (1960)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A fast-talking traveling salesman with a charming, loquacious manner convinces a sincere evangelist that he can be an effective preacher for her cause.

Director: Richard Brooks
Stars: Burt Lancaster, Jean Simmons, Arthur Kennedy
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Fred Whitmarsh
...
Mr. Bagley
Kay Williams ...
Hazel Dawn
...
Emma Glavey
Norma Jean Nilsson ...
Anna
Dawn Bender ...
Katherine
Edit

Storyline

Former seaman Clinton Jones now works at a lowly job. His daughter Ruth wants to become an actress. Clinton gets fired and Ruth rejects the advances of Fred Whitmarsh. Her father gives her his seaman's spyglass to sell as she heads for New York City. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

There's hope and heart-ache in the adventures of a stage-struck daughter!


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 September 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Years Ago  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Debbie Reynolds was considered for the lead role. See more »

Goofs

In a scene late in the film set in the kitchen, the light fixture over the kitchen table is seen (and heard!) to rise up to allow the camera to pass below it. See more »

Quotes

Annie Jones: Now. Wasn't that enjoyable?
Ruth Gordon Jones: I wish I was dead.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits are shown over the cover of a photo album, and the film begins by showing us various photos from inside the album. See more »

Connections

Version of The DuPont Show of the Month: Years Ago (1960) See more »

Soundtracks

The Washington Post
(1889) (uncredited)
Music by John Philip Sousa
Music played during the exercise exhibition
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Spencer Tracy shines in Ruth Gordon's affectionate reminiscence of her father
15 December 2002 | by (Western New York) – See all my reviews

Ruth Gordon's play Years Ago, a sentimental reminiscence along the lines of Kathryn Forbes' Mama's Bank Account, looked at her stage-struck adolescence. In 1953, it became a movie, The Actress, directed by George Cukor, with the rarefied and mannered Jean Simmons taking the part of the straight-shooting Gordon. Oddly enough, the main character is not the aspiring actress but her father, played by Spencer Tracy.

In Clinton Jones, Gordon penned a difficult but irresistible character. Settled unarguably into middle age but still fighting it, he chafes at his $37.50-a-week salary (it was 1913) and pores over the grocery list while his wife (Teresa Wright) defends such frivolities as tangerines. A former sea captain, he latches onto any opportune ears like the Ancient Mariner and spins his salty yarns of ports of call on the seven seas. In the dead of a New England winter, he insists on sleeping in a hammock strung on an upstairs porch. The ham in Tracy rises to the challenge, and he manages to make Jones recklessly funny while still a bit frightening (near the end, details of his dreadful boyhood emerge to put his cantankerousness in focus).

As screenwriters, Gordon and her husband Garson Kanin custom-tailored many screen vehicles for Tracy and co-star Katharine Hepburn, where their relationship is said to take the writers' marriage as its model; here Tracy returns the favor by making Gordon's father so unforgettable. Gordon pays a tribute, too, by sketching her character not as she remembered it but as he must have seen her, showing little talent or wit but a penchant for dreaming up castles in Spain. By hiding her own bright light under a bushel, she lets the memory of her father shine.


29 of 30 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?