In this documentary on the life of 'Joan Crawford', we learn why she should be remembered as the great actress she was, and not only as the "mommie dearest." caricature she has become. ... See full summary »
SURVIVING MOMMIE DEAREST: A documentary based on a one-woman multimedia play written by and starring best-selling author, Christina Crawford. It covers not only 100 years of entertainment ... See full summary »
Based on the book about Joan Crawford, one of the great Hollywood actresses of our time, written by her adopted daughter Christina Crawford. Joan decides to adopt children of her own to fill a void in her life. Yet, her problems with alcohol, men, and the pressures of show business get in the way of her personal life, turning her into a mentally abusive wreck seen through the eyes of Christina and her brother Christopher, who unwillingly bore the burden of life that was unseen behind the closed doors of "The Most Beautiful House in Brentwood." Written by
Geoffrey A. Middleton <email@example.com>
Writer of the film's source book, Christina Crawford, once said of this movie after she had seen it: "My mother didn't deserve that. Miss Dunaway's performance was ludicrous. I didn't see any care for factual information. Now I've seen it I'm sorry I did. Faye says she is being haunted by mother's ghost. After her performance, I can understand why." See more »
Diana Scarwid's stunt double in the choking scene is clearly male - look closely at his legs - they're a shade darker than Scarwid's and more muscular. See more »
You drove Al Steele to his grave, and now you're trying to stab me in the back? Forget it. I fought worse monsters than you for years in Hollywood. I know how to win the hard way.
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"Why can't you treat me like I would be treated by any stranger on the street?"
"Because I am NOT one of your FANS!"
Simply said, this is superb trash. Enjoyable b.s. Faye Dunaway lobbied hard for the role of Joan Crawford (Christina Crawford wanted Anne Bancroft) and she admirably sinks into the part with relish. I loved the opening montage of "Joan" preparing for her day early in the morning: scrubbing her hands and nails, numbing her face in ice cubes, leafing through a script in her car, getting made-up, and then whirling around in her chair and letting loose with a breathy, "Let's go!"... Sadly, Frank Perry's direction is awkward and unsure, cutting off some sequences before they're allowed to build and letting other scenes ramble on. The movie doesn't do justice to the riveting book by Joan's adopted daughter Christina, committing to film the book's highlights, the talked-about bits where Crawford freaked out, but skimping on the details. We learn absolutely nothing about Christina's many tormented years in an L.A. Catholic Boarding School (we see her check in and we see her check out). Joan's marriage to Pepsi czar Alfred Steele and her three other adopted kids are also given the short shrift. What we do get with "Mommie Dearest" is pure, unadulterated Faye. She acts up a storm and revels in these primal opportunities. It's one of the highlights of her spotty career. **1/2 from ****
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