A poor, elderly white woman living in a tenement in a black ghetto is befriended by a neighborhood boy, and the two of them form a mutually beneficial relationship: he provides her ... See full summary »
Ernest Harden Jr.,
A woman who left home 20 years ago under acrimonious circumstances finds out that she is terminally ill. She returns home and tries to rebuild her relationship with her embittered mother ... See full summary »
Elizabeth Winfield is a retired teacher and matriarch of a problematic family who desperately tries to keep her family together, after many years they separated from each other. While she's... See full summary »
J. Ashley Hyman,
In 1926, famous evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson disappeared for six weeks. When she surfaced, she claimed that she had been kidnapped and held prisoner in Mexico. Others claimed that she ... See full summary »
The plot centers around a large area of land owned by an old black lady, Elvira Backus. It had been given to her by her one time employer and secret father of her two children, a southern ... See full summary »
An aging Bette Davis is a flight instructor at an old Texas airport. When a young girl in a wheelchair finds the airport by watching gliders fly, she decides she wants to learn how to fly. ... See full summary »
Miniature Dwyer is named after her mother, who was making miniature doll houses when Minnie was born. Minnie, too, has built doll houses for years, and when she learns that she is terminally ill, she and her husband Teddy begin planning their joint suicide. She makes sure that her dolls are placed with people who will appreciate and cherish them. The couple refuse to allow their grief-stricken daughter or the solicitous social worker or anyone else to forestall the death they are determined is right for them.Written by
Filmed in 1982, not released until 1983. See more »
Would you like to know what it is we want to spare you from? The doctors describe it as a kind of starvation death. Except every cell in my body is a stomach. The pain will be immense. I'll lose all sense of who I am or what I am. I'll lose my insides and I'll lose my outsides. I'll be half my size and weight. Or smaller. A tiny figure lying on a rubber sheet in some hideous cinder-block building they call a hospital.
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HBO reportedly filmed three alternate endings for this made-for-television movie about an elderly couple that wants to end their lives together, and their adult daughter who wants to stop them. In the original scripted ending, the daughter finds the garage sealed and hears the car running inside, but decides not to interfere. She walks into the house, answers a phone, and looks the at the dolls her mother has left behind. In another ending that was filmed, a news crew visits the home and hears the car inside. They break in and the daughter finds here parents in the house being treated by paramedics. The daughter is told they are technically under arrest and the bewildered father is led away by a policeman while his wife is being treated on a couch. In a third version it reportedly is a passerby who notices the fumes coming from the garage rather than a news crew. When originally broadcast on HBO the original ending was used in which the couple died, but the other endings have appeared in other formats and in other markets. See more »
The main draw of 'Right of Way' is the two stars, wonderful actors in James Stewart and Bette Davis both responsible for some of the all-time great screen performances (namely George Bailey in 'It's A Wonderful Life' and Margo Channing in 'All About Eve') in many very good and more films. Another big draw is the subject 'Right of Way' explores, it's a brave subject and an important and relevant one.
'Right of Way' is interesting, thoughtful and has emotional impact, but doesn't see the best of either Stewart or Davis while not wasting them. The same applies for the subject of suicide pacts and euthanasia, handled intriguingly enough and hardly trivialised but could have been explored more and in a way more tactfully in places.
It is agreed that 'Right of Way' does suffer from lack of realism in parts, namely again agreed the actions of the daughter Ruda after being told of the couple's plan. The supporting characters are one-dimensional, patchily acted and written with little subtlety or plausibility, the social worker being the worst offender. A shame because it is such a relevant, important and real situation, but those misjudgements cheapened the impact somewhat.
Didn't buy the ending either, there was a sense that the writers and producers didn't know how to end so instead tacked one on. Momentum sags towards the end.
However, Davis and Stewart are excellent, they are the reason to see 'Right of Way', with a preference for the more restrained Stewart (at his most restrained ever perhaps). Davis is quite moving though and commands the screen whenever she appears, and if it is true that Davis was difficult to work with and she and Stewart spent little time together off screen their chemistry on screen didn't come over as distant. Melinda Dillon has a hard role to pull off, and she does pull it off, despite some of her actions she was not an unsympathetic character and she was not hard to relate to.
Beautifully filmed 'Right of Way' is too, while the script is thought-provoking and just about avoids over-sentimentality with touches of understated drollness and some very tender and poignant moments. Particularly a scene between Mrs Dwyer and Ruda. The story does absorb and move, didn't feel that much indifference in the handling of the topic and when there was realism it was sensitive and has one reaching for the tissues.
Summing up, interesting and moving but deals with a topic/subject that it could have gone into depth more. 7/10 Bethany Cox
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