7.7/10
2,449
45 user 6 critic

The Catered Affair (1956)

At breakfast, Jane announces that she and Ralph are getting married the next week. All Jane and Ralph want is a small wedding with the immediate family and no reception, because Jane's ... See full summary »

Director:

Richard Brooks

Writers:

Gore Vidal (screenplay), Paddy Chayefsky (play)
Reviews
2 wins. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bette Davis ... Aggie Hurley
Ernest Borgnine ... Tom Hurley
Debbie Reynolds ... Jane Hurley
Barry Fitzgerald ... Uncle Jack Conlon
Rod Taylor ... Ralph Halloran
Robert F. Simon ... Mr. Joe Halloran (as Robert Simon)
Madge Kennedy ... Mrs. Joe Halloran
Dorothy Stickney ... Mrs. Rafferty
Carol Veazie Carol Veazie ... Mrs. Casey
Joan Camden Joan Camden ... Alice Scanlon
Ray Stricklyn ... Eddie Hurley
Jay Adler ... Sam Leiter
Dan Tobin ... Hotel Caterer
Paul Denton Paul Denton ... Bill Scanlon
Augusta Merighi Augusta Merighi ... Mrs. Musso
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Storyline

At breakfast, Jane announces that she and Ralph are getting married the next week. All Jane and Ralph want is a small wedding with the immediate family and no reception, because Jane's parents are poor and Jane and Ralph can borrow a car for their honeymoon. But at dinner that night, all Ralph's parents talk about are the big weddings they gave their daughters, and everything escalates. Suddenly it's a big wedding breakfast with hundreds of guests. The problem is that for 12 years, Tom has been saving money to buy his own cab and license, but now that he can, all of that money is going towards a wedding that neither he nor Jane nor Ralph really want. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

When you're in love, nothing else matters See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 June 1956 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mädchen ohne Mitgift See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$1,008,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of Bette Davis' all-time favorite parts. See more »

Goofs

Aggie says they only had five days' notice until the wedding. They found out about the wedding on Friday morning. The wedding is scheduled for Tuesday morning. That is four days. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Bridge Attendant: Morning, Tom! How's the taxi business?
Tom Hurley: How's the bridge business?
Bridge Attendant: One more day like this, I'll own the bridge!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Stardust: The Bette Davis Story (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Cailín Deas Crúite na mBó (A Pretty Girl Milking Her Cow)
Traditional 18th-century Irish ballad
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Touching, nuanced
29 January 2005 | by luciferjohnsonSee all my reviews

An unjustly neglected "kitchen sink" movie from the fifties, with fine performances by all and intriguing New York locations.

Bette Davis and Ernest Borgnine portray the very much working-class parents of a young woman who is about to get married, and just wants a quick ceremony with no reception. But the mother, guilty about "not giving her daughter anything" over the years, pushes for an expensive "catered affair" that her husband cannot afford, and would use money he planned to devote to buying a taxicab license.

Davis' brassy performance has received the most attention, but Borgnine's subtle, nuanced portrayal of the father is what really sustains this movie. Barry Fitzgerald provides comic relief as a "oirish" uncle. Altogether a charming and touching film that is very much a slice of life of NYC in the fifties. Like the other Chayefsky scripts of this era, it explores themes that would have been unpalatable or mawkish for any other writer.


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