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Lana Turner... a Daughter's Memoir (2001)



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Complete credited cast:
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Himself - Makeup Artist
Lillian Burns ...
Herself - MGM Drama Coach 1937 (archive footage)
Himself - Actor
Irving Fine ...
Himself - Publicist
Evie Wynn Johnson ...
Herself - Lana's Friend
Herself - Actress
Himself (archive footage)
Glenn Rose ...
Himself - Lana's Publicist
Himself - Actor
Herself (archive footage)


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Release Date:

2001 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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A Rather Sad Look at a Legend
3 February 2012 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

Lana Turner: A Daughter's Memoir (2001)

**** (out of 4)

This incredibly open documentary features Lana Turner's daughter, Cheryl Crane, talking about her mother and their various personal issues. The documentary runs less than 90-minutes but it packs enough for two movies but at the same time there's no denying that it's all rather depressing and extremely sad. We start off learning about Turner's early days and how she eventually got her big break in Hollywood. This came in a very small scene in THEY WON'T FORGET, which is a pretty telling title. In the film Turner is scene walking without a bra and in a tight sweeter and this got her the nickname of the "Sweeter Girl" and once you see the scene you'll know why men fell in love and the actress was left embarrassed. From here we see her rise to fame and her many problems, which started before she was even an adult. We hear about her three failed marriages by the time she was thirty, the countless lovers, an illegal abortion, the abandoning of her daughter plus various other issues that would come up with countless men. What was so amazing to me about this movie is how open and honest it was about the subject. There's nothing here that's kept a secret and you could say that the movie highlights Turner's faults more than her actual movies. There's no question that we get to hear about her movies but this here isn't the majority of the running time. The two most infamous things are the stories dealing with Lex Barker raping Turner's daughter and the "Good Friday" where Turner was being abused by Johnny Stompanato and he would be killed by the daughter. Who will ever know what really happened but hearing the story from the actual person involved was rather sad. Even sadder is how much Turner's behavior probably damaged the daughter and I must say that I've never seen a sadder documentary from the fine folks at Turner Classic Movies. This is a marvelous film but I think many fans of Turner might not want to see it. Robert Wagner narrates and we get interviews from Crane, Irving Fine (publisist), Lillian Burns (MGM drama coach), Robert Stack, Evie Wynn Johnson, Jackie Cooper, Del Armstrong (Make-up artist), Glenn Rose, Juanita Moore and Kirk Douglas.

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