Lila Green is an insecure and aging showgirl for Madame Olga's stage shows. When her boyfriend, Rick, runs off with the shows money, Madame Olga and Ronny let Lila go. Lila goes to stay ... See full summary »
Lila Green is an insecure and aging showgirl for Madame Olga's stage shows. When her boyfriend, Rick, runs off with the shows money, Madame Olga and Ronny let Lila go. Lila goes to stay with her old neighbours, Helen Bard and her teenage son, Kenny. Lila decides to go out and get a regular job and try and live a normal life. All seem well until, Lila and Kenny stop fighting their attraction for one another. Written by
William Inge play "A Loss of Roses", originally written with Marilyn Monroe in mind, becomes showy dramatic vehicle for Joanne Woodward playing Lila Green, low-rent actress passing through her hometown in Kansas, ditched by her manager and boarding with an old girlfriend and her teenage son. The screenplay is entirely too straightforward, too rounded off; it should be more mercurial, mysterious, but instead it's routine soapy business. The character of Lila is an unconvincing creation: full of stories of users and hangers-on, she's a dreamer at the dead-end, hopeful but pathetic. Lila has been divorced, yet she's a little naive around men--it's never established how much of a tramp she is or where her reputation stands (as shown, she's more smoke than fire, more sad than sex-driven). It's to Woodward's credit the film is still quite interesting, yet the actress is too innately refined to be convincing as a kittenish tart. She is entirely serviceable, yet one can only watch and think what a more appropriate actress might have done with this material, weak as it is. This is one cleaned-up "Stripper" (awful title!), a film which never sinks to the sordid levels depicted, but remains a tidy middle-of-the-road tale. **1/2 from ****
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