Robert Montgomery Presents: Season 8, Episode 13

Sunset Boulevard (3 Dec. 1956)

TV Episode  |   |  Drama
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 10 users  
Reviews: 2 user

In this adaptation of the 1950 film, an opportunist writer grudgingly plays love interest to delusional silent film star Nora Desmond. In her fantasy world she's still the world's biggest ... See full summary »



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Title: Sunset Boulevard (03 Dec 1956)

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Episode cast overview:
Himself - Host
Betty Schaefer
Walter Kohler ...
Max von Meyerling
John Griggs
Carl Low


In this adaptation of the 1950 film, an opportunist writer grudgingly plays love interest to delusional silent film star Nora Desmond. In her fantasy world she's still the world's biggest star and throngs of adoring fans are awaiting her big comeback. Written by Jay Phelps <>

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Release Date:

3 December 1956 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

Ageism and Sexism still masquerading as a "Crazy Lady" movie
29 March 2015 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

This is a TV version of the Gloria Swanson film. The film is memorable, yes, but its real message is ugly. The story here is the same, but on a smaller budget and more confined. The writer is over thirty, but no one thinks anything of his pursuit of the script writer girl in her early twenties. The legendary film actress has hit fifty. Is there some reason she can't look at the younger man the way the man looks at a younger girl? The director with whom the actress once worked is older than the actress, but he's still working, and quite successfully.

Why shouldn't the actress continue her career? Why shouldn't she pursue younger love interests? The message in this story seems to be that only men are allowed to do those things. Making the actress "crazy" seemed a convenient way to mask the ageism and sexism that are the real message of this film.

This particular adaptation works just fine. I saw the film first, so I cannot say if the story would have struck me as hard had I only seen this. Darren McGavin was good in everything he ever did. He has the same cocky attitude as his Kolchak character did later on. Sadly, Mary Astor's drinking showed on her face. She was not the same woman that Jack Barrymore and Ronald Colman were hoping to marry. Gloria Swanson had aged better, despite actually being maybe a year older than Mary when she did her film version, and Gloria's version seems all the more ageist as a result. Mary just seems washed up and sad.

I'm not sure what the point was of remaking this. Of course, in the 50s people didn't have the luxury of owning their favorite movies on home copies, so maybe it was fun to see the story again. This version is not bad, but it doesn't improve on or add to the original film in any way, and that's why I gave it only a 6. Also, you don't get to see the amazing car. It's just referred to.

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