An aging politician tries to get re-elected one last time in the changing world of the 1950s when TV started to play a bigger part in politics. Based loosely on the career of multi-term Boston Mayor James Michael Curley, this film examines the good and evil inherent in politics and all the things that go into an election. Tracy's uphill battle to stay in office is set against the political machinery that preyed on ethnic hatred and old-time money. Written by
Did You Know?
Early in the film Skeffington says that his signature will never be as valuable as Button Gwinnet's, who apparently had publicly signed few documents in his life. Gwinnet, a delegate from Georgia, was the second signer of the Declaration of Independence, after John Hancock. Gwinnet's signature is quite rare and is considered the most valuable American signature by collectors, with sales recorded as high as $150,000, matched or exceeded only just behind signatures of Gaio Giulio Cesare
(aka Julius Caesar) and William Shakespeare
. However, it is not quite so rare as suggested by Skeffington, as there are at least 51 examples of Gwinnet's signature known to exist, and at one time during the 1920s five samples of his signature were owned by a dealer in rare books named Rosenbach. See more
When Frank Jr. bursts into the bedroom to see his dying Father, the doorknob comes apart and the interior knob falls off. The Doctor immediately follows him into the room, and the doorknob is once again intact. See more
Mayor Frank Skeffington
One more regret at my age won't make much difference.
Featured in Directed by John Ford