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Jane Fonda gives an Emmy-winning performance as Gertie Nevels, a pioneer woman and the mother of five from the Kentucky hills who is forced to uproot her children to follow her husband Clovis (Levon Helm) to Detroit when he finds work during World War II. One setback follows another and shattering tragedy strikes the family. It's all up to Gertie to find new strength, courage and determination to keep her family together and strong. Written by
This is a movie you'll want to watch again and again. Jane Fonda has created memorable characters throughout her career but her portrayal of Gertie is so achingly authentic and original, Fonda, as you may have seen her in other roles, is all but unrecognizable here.
Originally made for TV, I hope this movie will be released on DVD and be re-run frequently on TV and get some of the attention it deserves (I caught for the first time as a late night rerun.) Fonda's Gertie represents a very real American woman who is too rarely seen in movies, presented here with such stark realism, you'll take her into your heart.
This movie and Fonda's performance can stand along side the very best of American films. And it is simply a beautiful story - I hope more people get a chance to discover The Dollmaker.
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