IMDb > What's the Matter with Helen? (1971)
What's the Matter with Helen?
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What's the Matter with Helen? (1971) More at IMDbPro »


Overview

User Rating:
6.3/10   911 votes »
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MOVIEmeter: ?
Up 26% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Writer:
Henry Farrell (written by)
Contact:
View company contact information for What's the Matter with Helen? on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
13 April 1972 (Mexico) See more »
Tagline:
Why are they all dying so violently?... even the little rabbits! See more »
Plot:
Two middle-aged women move to Hollywood, California after their sons are convicted of a notorious murder and open a dance school for children eager to tap their way to stardom. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
Nominated for Oscar. See more »
User Reviews:
Great acting helps an uneven horror film See more (32 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Debbie Reynolds ... Adelle

Shelley Winters ... Helen

Dennis Weaver ... Linc Palmer
Micheál MacLiammóir ... Hamilton Starr (as Micheal Mac Liammóir)

Agnes Moorehead ... Sister Alma
Helene Winston ... Mrs. Greenbaum
Peggy Rea ... Mrs. Schultz
Logan Ramsey ... Detective Sgt. West
Paulle Clark ... Mrs. Plumb

Yvette Vickers ... Mrs. Barker
Molly Dodd ... Mrs. Rigg
Samee Lee Jones ... Winona (as Sammee Lee Jones)
Robbi Morgan ... Rosalie

Timothy Carey ... The Tramp
Swen Swenson ... The Gigolo
Debbie Van Den Houten ... Sue Anne
Teresa De Rose ... Donna
Pamelyn Ferdin ... Kiddie M.C.
Allen Pinson ... The Man
James Dobson ... Cab Driver
Sadie Delfino ... The Little Lady
Tammy Lee ... Adelle's Kiddystars
Sharann Hisamoto ... Adelle's Kiddystars (as Sharon Hisamoto)
Stacey Hollow ... Adelle's Kiddystars
Marcia Garcia ... Adelle's Kiddystars
Bambi Meyers ... Adelle's Kiddystars

Rocky Bonifield ... Adelle's Kiddystars (as Roxanne Meyers)
Vicki Schreck ... Adelle's Kiddystars
Keri Shuttleton ... Adelle's Kiddystars
Shawn Steinman ... Adelle's Kiddystars (as Shawn Steinmann)
Madelon Tupper ... Adelle's Kiddystars

Sian Winship ... Adelle's Kiddystars
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Peter Brocco ... Old Man (uncredited)
Gary Combs ... Matt Hill (uncredited)
Annette Davis ... Spinster (uncredited)
Douglas Deane ... Fanatical Man (uncredited)
Minta Durfee ... Old Lady (uncredited)
Helene Heigh ... Widow (uncredited)
Peggy Patten ... Ellie Banner (uncredited)
Harry Stanton ... Malcolm Hays (uncredited)

Peggy Walton-Walker ... Young Girl (uncredited)
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Directed by
Curtis Harrington 
 
Writing credits
Henry Farrell (written by)

Produced by
George Edwards .... producer
Edward S. Feldman .... executive producer
James C. Pratt .... associate producer
 
Original Music by
David Raksin 
 
Cinematography by
Lucien Ballard (director of photography)
 
Film Editing by
William Reynolds  (as William H. Reynolds)
 
Casting by
Caro Jones 
 
Art Direction by
Eugène Lourié  (as Eugene Lourie)
 
Set Decoration by
Jerry Wunderlich 
 
Costume Design by
Morton Haack 
 
Makeup Department
Sydney Guilaroff .... hair creations
William Tuttle .... makeup artist
Bette Iverson .... hair stylist (uncredited)
Helene Parrish .... hair stylist (uncredited)
Scotty Rackin .... hair stylist (uncredited)
William Reynolds .... makeup artist (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Claude Binyon Jr. .... assistant director
John Thomas Lenox .... assistant director trainee (uncredited)
Michael Messinger .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Ted P. Angel .... senior set designer (uncredited)
Glen Cooper .... stand-by painter (uncredited)
Les Gobruegge .... assistant art director (uncredited)
Dudley Holmes .... prop master (uncredited)
Gerald MacDonald .... coordinator (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
Charles Grenzbach .... sound re-recordist (as Bud Grenzbach)
Al Overton Jr. .... sound
Hal Belcher .... sound (uncredited)
Bob Sheridan .... engineer (uncredited)
Bob Sheridan .... sound boom (uncredited)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Robert Edouart .... second assistant camera (uncredited)
Bud Gaunt .... grip (uncredited)
Earl Gilbert .... gaffer (uncredited)
Bud Howell .... dolly grip (uncredited)
Thomas Laughridge .... camera operator (uncredited)
Cecil Lupton .... best boy (uncredited)
Robert Schunke .... best boy (uncredited)
Sterling Smith .... still photographer (uncredited)
Bud Woodside .... rigging gaffer (uncredited)
Harry Young .... first assistant camera (uncredited)
 
Casting Department
Darlene di Ponzio .... casting secretary (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Fanny Edwards .... costumer: women (uncredited)
Sally Lister .... costumer: women (uncredited)
Andy Matyasi .... costumer: men (uncredited)
Terri Nelson .... costume supervisor: women (uncredited)
Frank Tauss .... costume supervisor: men (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Michael F. Anderson .... apprentice film editor (uncredited)
James D. Wells .... assistant editor (uncredited)
 
Music Department
Tony Charmoli .... stager: musical numbers
Ralph Ives .... music editor
David Raksin .... conductor
Randy Rayburn .... musician: rehearsal pianist (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Tony Charmoli .... choreographer
Paulle Clark .... production assistant
John Franco Jr. .... production assistant
Alan Greedy .... script supervisor (as Allan Greedy)
Phill Norman .... titles: Cinefx
Martin Ransohoff .... presenter
Tad Tadlock .... assistant choreographer
Bill Beaumont .... craft service (uncredited)
Cary Glieberman .... intern: American Film Institute (uncredited)
Dorothy Kelly .... production secretary (uncredited)
Jerry Roberts .... production assistant (uncredited)
Dominic Santarone .... caterer (uncredited)
Ruth Santarone .... caterer (uncredited)
Lorraine Serber .... production assistant (uncredited)
Carl Shapiro .... unit publicist (uncredited)
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies
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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
101 min
Country:
Language:
Color:
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Argentina:16 | Australia:M | Canada:14A (Canadian Home Video rating) | Finland:K-18 | Sweden:15 | USA:GP (Approved No. 22897) (original rating)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
According to Debbie Reynolds, Shelley Winters' psychiatrist advised her not to portray a woman having a nervous breakdown because, at the time, she was having a real-life nervous breakdown. "She's the kind of actress who becomes the part she's playing..." said Reynolds, "so all through the film she drove all of us insane!"See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: In the closeup, Helen holds the magazine with Jean Harlow's photo in her left hand and points to it with her right. When it cuts to a wide shot, she's grasping the sides of the magazine with both hands.See more »
Quotes:
Helen Hill:Men can be quite a bit lower than the angels.See more »
Movie Connections:
References George White's Scandals (1934)See more »
Soundtrack:
What a Friend We Have in JesusSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
4 out of 4 people found the following review useful.
Great acting helps an uneven horror film, 11 June 2012
Author: Wayne Malin (wwaayynnee51@hotmail.com) from United States

The movie takes place in the 1930s--The mothers (Debbie Reynolds and Shelley Winters) of two murdering sons run away to Hollywood after their sons are convicted. They change their names and open a dance studio for children. Reynolds quickly adjusts to her new life and falls for a nice guy (Dennis Weaver). However Winters keeps having flashbacks to her husband's bloody accident that killed him--or was it an accident? This film looks fantastic. Curtis Harrington was a very good, underrated director and he did a great job here. The settings and costumes are incredible and perfectly fit the 1930s. However the story doesn't flow smoothly. It runs in fits and starts and comes to a screeching halt for THREE musical numbers with the kids and Reynolds! Also a certain murder at the end was drastically cut to avoid an R rating (the director was not happy about it). But the acting saves it. Reynolds is superb in a very dramatic and hard role. I never thought she could act till I saw this. Winters chews the scenery (as usual) but in a fun way. Also, despite the GP (now PG) rating this is pretty bloody and the shock ending is totally ruined by being on the poster AND the theatrical trailer! Still it's worth catching.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for What's the Matter with Helen? (1971)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Shelley Winters on Piano ajh_pants
Opinions anyone...? craigoprego
Helen was related to Baby Jane and Charlotte beamsamuel1
Debbie Reynolds = Babe JimmyCollins
Will this ever come out on blu ray? hairybro2000
Trailer Commentary for 'WTMWH' willardfillmore
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