Joan is a bit long in the tooth playing a spinster who is "somewhat" older than Cliff Robertson. Lorne Greene steals the show as his sleazy grifter dad.
Joan was old enough to be Cliff Robertson's mother. This was the case in all of Joan's 50s movies. Her leading men were always much, much younger than her and we weren't supposed to notice the age difference.
He's SUPPOSED to be younger than her - that's an important plot point in this film. It's why she resists his attentions at first. Were you not listening to the dialogue?
Cliff told the story that Crawford came onto him early in filming, saying she "slept with all her leading men" and he had to fight her off all thru the making of the movie. After the film was a big hit, Joan sent Cliff a ton of flowers with a note thanking him for his contribution to the film's success, and hoping they would always be friends.
Robertson also said how he was impressed with Joan's talent and committment. They'd ask her to cry and she then asked which eye they wanted the tear to drop from and do it upon request.
R1 I know her character was supposed to be somewhat older, but she looks twice his age. Despite this and the breathy dialogue Joan was able to convey real pathos as a loving wife struggling with her own insecurities.
I saw this years ago and it's soooo dull compared to her other '50s output like Sudden Fear, Queen Bee and Torch Song. Aside from the altercation with Vera Miles and Lorne Greene and the smash-her-hand-in-the-typewriter scene, it doesn't have much camp or replay value.
She really should have gone on the stage in the 50s and 60s and toured the country. K. Hepburn and I. Bergman did a lot of that sort of thing.
The overacting wouldn't have been as pronounced, and she would have reaped the rewards of audience approval.
[quote]I saw this years ago and it's soooo dull compared to her other '50s output like Sudden Fear, Queen Bee, and Torch Song.
Joan's character in Queen Bee is scarier than Mothra and Rodan put together.
The nuttiest Joan vehicles are, IMO, Johnny Guitar and Harriet Craig. The latter is high camp, but not much fun.
A lot of the late Joan Crawford movies are just depressing. Her makeup is so weird she looks like she's in Kabuki.
The one I really love is Berserk because they realized how strange she looks and really went with it. the scenes where she's dressed like a young woman are intentionally nightmarish--same with the scene where Diane Baker wears a Joan Crawford mask and faces off against her.
Cliff Robertson is really handsome in Autumn Leaves. He never seemed to get a real fair shake from Hollywood, even before the blackballing incident (and despite the Oscar).
We're running a circus here - not a charm school!
Joan, going berserk
R 8 that's STRAIT JACKET not BERSERK.
So Joan Crawford twenty years older than Cliff Robertson is his slightly older love interest.
But Lorne Green eight years older than Cliff is his father.
Do I have this right?
Wow, it's like Jesse Royce Landis as Cary Grant's mom in To Catch A Thief!
Who did Vera Miles play again, was she the landlady?
Joan Crawford was much too frightened to act on stage, R6. You've seen and (and heard reports) of her on the Lucy Show. That was filmed in front of a live audience and she nearly went crazy because of it.
[quote]Wow, it's like Jesse Royce Landis as Cary Grant's mom in To Catch A Thief!
[italic]North by Northwest[/italic]
R13, Miles played Robertson's ex who was now shacked up with Greene. My fave 50s Crawford films would be QUEEN BEE, TORCH SONG and FEMALE ON THE BEACH. I need to see SUDDEN FEAR again because I'm not that familiar with it and it sounds like a hoot.
My favorite of her latter roles is as Carrottop in THE BEST OF EVERYTHING.
The Hissing Eldergay (THE)
It's true that Joan had terrible stage fright-the very few times in her career that she appeared in front of a live audience, she had to get stinking drunk to do it. If you've seen Joan on the Lucy Show, she is visibly intoxicated.
Before the crazy eyebrows and severe tailoring
mute the sound and look at her beautiful face
It's so odd how Joan's face changed over the years. As a young woman she was stunningly beautiful, but then as she go older her face hardened into a gargoyle-like visage with those crazy eyebrows. It's almost like looking at two different people.
Young Joan, absolutely lovely...
It surprises me that Joan's eyebrows could have grown back so heavily after all that plucking in the 1920s and 30s.
r28 is correct. After Joan saw the pics of herself in the newspapers the next day, she was appalled at how she looked and never left her apartment at the Imperial House again. Here is actual footage of Joan from the event, and she's clearly been drinking.