Great Performances (1971– )
7.3/10
205
7 user 3 critic

Suddenly, Last Summer 

The only son of wealthy widow Violet Venable dies while on vacation with his cousin Catherine. What the girl saw was so horrible that she went insane; now Mrs. Venable wants Catherine lobotomized to cover up the truth.

Director:

Richard Eyre

Writer:

Tennessee Williams (play)
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Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. See more awards »

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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
Maggie Smith ... Violet Venable
Rob Lowe ... Doctor Cukrowicz
Gillian Raine Gillian Raine ... Miss Foxhill
Richard E. Grant ... George Holly
Moira Redmond ... Mrs. Holly
C.P. Wilson C.P. Wilson ... Butler
Natasha Richardson ... Catharine Holly
Rosaleen Linehan Rosaleen Linehan ... Sister Felicity
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Storyline

The only son of wealthy widow Violet Venable dies while on vacation with his cousin Catherine. What the girl saw was so horrible that she went insane; now Mrs. Venable wants Catherine lobotomized to cover up the truth.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Music

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 January 1993 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Shot in 11 days. See more »

Quotes

Doctor Cukrowicz: [lighting a table lighter, which flames high] Lord! What a torch!
Violet Venable: So shines a good deed in a naughty world, Dr. Sugar.
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User Reviews

 
Wrong, wrong, wrong...
4 October 2009 | by austinmanixSee all my reviews

I'm a fan of the original movie with Liz Taylor, Katharine Hepburn and Montgomery Clift and I knew that the 1959 film was very different from the stage version. This version with Natasha Richardson, Maggie Smith and Rob Lowe seems to stick closer to the original text. The three leads are amazing but the supporting cast seemed to lack direction, grasp the severity of the situation at hand or even know how to really REact to situations. The man playing George (Richard E. Grant) had two modes, loud and frantic and quiet and frantic. When mad he would make the same arm gestures over and over again and showed absolutely no character development. Several times during temper tantrums, he paid no attention to where he was going and almost fell over parts of the set. His mother Ms. Holly (played by Moira Redmond) came off as being not only a ditz, but a drunk one at that and stumbled over many lines. Ms. Foxhill played to absurdity by Gillian Raine was painful to watch. Richardson and Smith were fantastic playing off one another and Lowe was greatly underused. Tennessee Williams wrote many tragic figures into his plays and stories and Catherine, the one in Suddenly, Last Summer was based in part on events that led to his (Tennessee's) sisters lobotomy. It takes a special type of talent and adaptation to pull off Tennessee Williams and the supporting cast missed the mark by such a wide margin that it was difficult to focus on the fantastic performances of the three leads.


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