As wholesome as the Waltons or Little House On The Prairie, I would believe it if I was told there was hope this would spin off into a series back then.
Bette Davis is Elizabeth Winfield (irony of ironies, this was also the maiden name of Redd Foxx's Fred Sanford's late wife that he would always call to. We learn her maiden name in the episode that guested BB King), the matriarch of a family that has drifted apart for various reasons.
She sees surveyors on her property, as sprawling as Bonanza's Cartwright Ponderosa, and learns a nephew, played by David Huddleston, is selling off parts of his share.
Now Davis must reunite the family once more, to save the family land.
But the problem is the rift occurred between Davis, her sister and her brother, George.
The sister I believe had passed on, and the brother, George, was in an old folk's home.
Bette sees her nephew George, and upon deciding to reunite with her brother, she takes the train to sort out her thoughts.
George died before she could get there. She was too late.
So now she must do what she can to bring younger generations around.
These involve a brain-damaged nephew, an interracial marriage and one great-niece living with her boyfriend. How would the family deal with that? The funniest bit with the wedlock story was the boyfriend's name was Waynefeld and someone thought he had changed it from Winfield.
Further on, when the boyfriend did contemplate proposing to his girlfriend, upon seeing her in great-grandma's wedding dress, I believe, he mentioned that if they give their baby her maiden name as a first name, this will make the kid Winfield Waynefeld.
John Shea was another sniveling relation, working in Huddleston's hip pocket.
At the reunion, it was the mentally retarded nephew, who finally felt he belonged to a family, who brought everything to the surface, upon realizing no more family reunions could be held if the property was sold.
This nephew was a holder in a large portion of the property and he was the domino that started everything falling apart.
This subtle breakdown of this moment with Davis on one side and the quite capable Huddleston on the other, was enjoyable to watch.
I'm really surprised there are no reviews for this movie as it was very good.
Davis lost it a bit as the different branches of younger generations came forth, but she emerged at the end as the head of this clan.
Very good film.
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