Deprived of a normal childhood by her ambitious mother, Katie, Lillian Roth becomes a star of Broadway and Hollywood before she is twenty. Shortly before her marriage to her childhood ...
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Deprived of a normal childhood by her ambitious mother, Katie, Lillian Roth becomes a star of Broadway and Hollywood before she is twenty. Shortly before her marriage to her childhood sweetheart, David Tredman, he dies and Lillian takes her first drink of many down the road of becoming an alcoholic. She enters into a short-lived marriage to an immature aviation cadet, Wallie, followed by a divorce and then marriage to a sadistic brute and abuser Tony Bardeman. After a failed suicide attempt, Burt McGuire comes to her aid and helps her find the road back to happiness after sixteen years in a nightmare world, not counting the first twenty with her mother. Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Lillian Roth was disappointed that MGM did not ask her to sing for Susan Hayward on the soundtrack. Coordinated with the movie's release, Epic Records issued an album of Lillian reprising tunes associated with her career in vaudeville, on Broadway and in Hollywood. Containing 12 songs with an orchestra directed by Don Costa, the album used the same title ("I'll Cry Tomorrow") as Miss Roth's 1954 autobiography (co-written with Mike Connolly and Gerold Frank), plus the 1955 biopic. Miss Roth's LP contained the three complete numbers performed by Susan in the movie: "Sing You Sinners," "When the Red, Red Robin Comes Bob, Bob, Bobbin' Along" and "Happiness Is a Thing Called Joe." Lillian's LP did not include "The Vagabond King Waltz" (sung partially on screen by Miss Hayward) nor the film's promotional song (music by Alex North, lyrics by Johnny Mercer), a mournful ballad introduced on disc by Susan, who was backed by Johnny Green and His Quartette. Initially, the Hayward cut was released by MGM Records on both a 45-rpm single (flip side: Cole Porter's "Just One of Those Things") and on a six-selection EP. In 2004, the commercial theme recorded by Susan was reissued on the full soundtrack CD by Film Score Monthly. See more »
Lillian sits at a desk and begins to write a suicide note on a pad of paper. When she rises from the desk to walk to the window the pad of paper, as well as the pen, are nowhere in sight. See more »
You'll Be Optimistic Tomorrow After Seeing this Film
One of the best pictures ever made showcasing the talent of the brilliant Susan Hayward.
Miss Hayward was never better as Lillian Roth. Her drunk scenes are unbelievably realistic. Just ask any alcoholic.
Susan Hayward was equally matched by the terrific supporting performance of Jo Van Fleet as her mother. Van Fleet would win the coveted Oscar that same year (1955) for "East of Eden." I'll never understand why. She was far better as Katie Roth.
Hayward, who did her own singing, did very well. It is even said that Lillian Roth tried to emulate Hayward, when trying to make a comeback.
The film co-stars Ray Danton as Hayward's ill-fated fiancé, whose death from an apparent rapidly growing brain tumor, sets Roth on a downward spiral. Don Taylor, who would later become a director, is effective as Wallie, the guy who Roth marries when she is dead drunk. Richard Conte steals the show as the brutal Tony, who takes Roth for a ride, before she dumps him in California.
Eddie Albert, in one of his greatest roles, is terrific as Burt McGuire from AA. A recovering alcoholic, still hesitant about life, he acted beautifully in some memorable scenes.
Hayward's singing and dancing, especially in the number, Sing You Sinners from the Vagabond King, is marvelously staged.
Susan Hayward began her long trek in playing troubled women in the 1947 hit Smash-Up: The Story of A Woman. Both she and Eddie Albert got great experience for their parts, 8 years later, in this fabulous movie.
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