Sweet Bird of Youth (1989)

TV Movie  |   |  Drama  |  1 October 1989 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 339 users  
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Aging film star Alexandra del Lago, also known as Princess Kosmonopolis, fears her career is over due to her fading youthful looks. She takes up with a handsome young man, Chance Wayne, who... See full summary »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Kevin Geer ...
Ronnie Claire Edwards ...
Cheryl Paris ...
Charles Lucia ...
Dr. George Scudder
Teddy Wilson ...
Fly (as Theodore Wilson)
Mission Man (as John W. Fleck)
Michael Wilding Jr. ...
(as Michael Wilding)
Tom Nolan
Billy Ray Sharkey ...


Aging film star Alexandra del Lago, also known as Princess Kosmonopolis, fears her career is over due to her fading youthful looks. She takes up with a handsome young man, Chance Wayne, who once had promise as an actor but who has fallen into the life of a gigolo. Together they travel to Chance's home town, where he hopes to regain the love of his one-time girlfriend Heavenly Finley. But Chance's departure years before has destroyed Heavenly's possibilities of a happy life, and her father, political boss Tom Finley, wants revenge on Chance. Chance hopes to take Heavenly with him to start the movie career he believes the Princess offers him, but she is so fragile in her dread of lost youth that no one's dreams seem likely to come true. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

1 October 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ambitions d'amour  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs


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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Rip Torn (Boss Finley) was in the original film version as Finley's son. See more »


This remake is set in the late 1950s. Yet Alexandra del Lago pays with a credit card, not with checks as in the original play and original film. Also some of the costuming, especially Heavenly's, is much later in style than the 1950's-early 1960s. See more »


Version of Sweet Bird of Youth (1962) See more »

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User Reviews

Completely unbiased review.
2 December 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

First off, I have never seen the original, so there won't be any comparisons to Geraldine Page. I wouldn't know her if I fell over her, actually. When I said unbiased, I meant I would not be comparing this to the original film. I will say that this movie is awful.

Tennessee Williams is a bit over my head, I think, so parts of this film were lost on me. It seems that Alexandra De Lago (Elizabeth Taylor) had been a star, but she's faded considerably. Apparently, she was away from the screen for some time, so her appearance surprised people. I shouldn't doubt it, as the poster for her attempted comeback shows Elizabeth Taylor in her early 20s. No wonder they're startled. She's 30-odd years older than they thought. Senility has set in early, and she simply can't keep her train of thought going for more than a few minutes before it derails, leaving her hopelessly confused. I found myself giggling every time she yelled "Where I am? Who are you?" I don't think it's supposed to be funny, but I laughed. Hard.

While staying at what looks like a hotel on the beach, Alexandra (a.k.a. the Princess Kosmonopolis, of all things) meets a hunky "masssage therapist." I put that in quotation marks, because while people seem to think he's a massage therapist, he's really a gigolo that preys on weak-minded older women. Who's more weak-minded than our laid-off legend, Alexandra. Oh, he's all over her, rubbing her back, which I didn't want to see, and unzipping her muumuu. (That's what it is, you know. Didn't want to see it, either.) Next scene, they're driving down the road. What road? What happened? At this point, I was in the same fix as Alexandra--completely confused. I realized that they'd been involved intimately, but why in the heck would she hook up with that goofball? (Goofball is played by the dreadfully horrible Mark Harmon, I guess.) As the "plot" develops, Goofball reveals himself to be a pathetic would-be blackmailer, and Alexandra reveals herself to be an equally pathetic, blackmailing, sex-starved "monster." That's her word for them--they're monsters. She's right about something, for once.

Along the way, we're forced to watch Goofball try to find his dream girl, aptly named Heavenly; we also have to sit through Elizabeth Taylor's slightly confused portrayal. Did anyone help her with this? Did the director ever tell her what to do? Is she supposed to be hilarious? What is going on?!?

I give this two out of five stars, as I enjoy a good bad movie.

4 of 31 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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