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Mame (1974)

PG | | Musical | 27 March 1974 (USA)
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It's the late 1920s. Upon the death of wealthy Chicagoan Edward Dennis, his nine-year old son Patrick Dennis becomes the ward of their only living relative, Edward's equally wealthy New ... See full summary »

Director:

Gene Saks

Writers:

Jerome Lawrence (Broadway musical), Robert E. Lee (Broadway musical) | 5 more credits »
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Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lucille Ball ... Mame Dennis
Bea Arthur ... Vera Charles
Robert Preston ... Beauregard Jackson Pickett Burnside
Bruce Davison ... Older Patrick
Kirby Furlong Kirby Furlong ... Young Patrick
Jane Connell Jane Connell ... Agnes Gooch
George Chiang George Chiang ... Ito
Joyce Van Patten ... Sally Cato
Doria Cook-Nelson Doria Cook-Nelson ... Gloria Upson (as Doria Cook)
Don Porter ... Mr. Upson
Audrey Christie ... Mrs. Upson
John McGiver ... Mr. Babcock
Bobbi Jordan Bobbi Jordan ... Pegeen
Patrick Labyorteaux ... Peter
Lucille Benson ... Mother Burnside
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Storyline

It's the late 1920s. Upon the death of wealthy Chicagoan Edward Dennis, his nine-year old son Patrick Dennis becomes the ward of their only living relative, Edward's equally wealthy New York residing sister, Mame Dennis. Edward's will states that Patrick is to be raised Protestant in a "traditional" manner and that the trustee, Mr. Babcock with the Knickerbocker Bank, will pay Mame for expenses incurred in raising Patrick, he having the right of refusal to pay if he deems that the spirit of Edward's will is not honored. Mr. Babcock and Patrick's longtime nanny, the timid Agnes Gooch, are to ensure that Patrick is raised correctly. Edward included these stipulations in his will as he knows his sister is a flamboyant, free wheeling and eccentric woman who can be considered anything but traditional or conventional. Despite the disruption each provides in the other's life, Mame and Patrick form a loving, supportive relationship. Mame wants to provide her sense of guidance to Patrick, ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

She'll coax the blues right out of your heart!

Genres:

Musical

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Japanese | French | Russian

Release Date:

27 March 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Ante todo, mujer See more »

Filming Locations:

Santa Clarita, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$12,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The interior of Mame's Beekman Place apartment was built in Sound Stage 25 on the Warner Bros. Studio lot. See more »

Goofs

When Mame, Agnes, Ito, and Patrick are preparing to dine with Beau, Mame remarks, "I never thought Santa Claus would look so much like Rhett Butler." This part of the movie is set in the early Great Depression, well before Gone with the Wind or even the book (1936) was released. See more »

Quotes

Vera: [indignantly] I was never in the chorus. I was NEVER in the chorus!
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Dick Cavett Show: Episode dated 7 March 1974 (1974) See more »

Soundtracks

It's Today
Written by Jerry Herman (uncredited)
Performed by Lucille Ball and company
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Granny Get Your Gun
3 February 2008 | by gftbiloxiSee all my reviews

Lucille Ball was a mighty power in television throughout the 1950s and 1960s, but she still made an occasional film, most notably THE LONG, LONG TRAILER and THE FACTS OF LIFE. Although her television career remained strong, as the 1970s began her movie career seemed to be winding down--but Ball was determined to have one last big screen fling, and the project she selected was the 1966 musical MAME.

In many respects the role seemed tailor-made: based on the popular novel which gave rise to two different Broadway plays, Mame Dennis is a wacky, wildly uninhibited woman who "inherits" her orphaned nephew Patrick--and leads him on a wild tour of life's possibilities, bouncing from one comic spree to another. The music, which featured such songs as "Open a New Window" and "If He Walked Into My Life Today," was among Jerry Herman's best work. The supporting cast, which included Robert Preston and Bea Arthur, was the best of the best. Expectations were high; opening night fanfare was tremendous; the film was a disaster. Critics were aghast and audiences sat slack-jawed.

No matter what hardcore Lucy fans may say, MAME is a fiasco, so much so that it is hard to know where to start. It is badly directed, badly filmed, badly performed, and there Lucille Ball is at the center of it all, unable to dance, unable to sing, and grinning like a waxworks dummy while incredibly bad choreography swirls around her. But the disaster is hardly of her making alone; the supporting cast fares no better. Bea Arthur and Jane Connell recreate their stage roles of Vera Charles and Agnes Gooch; the former is stagey, the latter is dismal. Robert Preston manages to sing with a smile, but he's pretty much on his own and clearly none too happy about it.

The DVD brings the film from the VHS pan-and-scan release to widescreen, but that only means there's more awfulness to see. Everybody loves Lucy, but only the least critical fan could love Lucy's MAME; while I wouldn't say it's bad enough to make you want to gouge your eyes out, you may wish you had. Not recommended.

GFT, Amazon Reviewer


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