I actually think that this is one of Bette Davis' worst performances, but at the same time she is fascinating to watch. They originally wanted "true beauties" like Hedy Lamarr or Merle Oberon to portray the beautiful but vain Fanny Skeffington, but Davis put the screws on someone to get the part for her. I love Merle, but she was not one quarter of the actress Bette was. Hedy was even less than that. One of the few films made during the war to talk about antisemitism.
It is also a movie that displays a "Sambo" doll. A major misstep by Davis. But Rains is brilliant .
I find one should never look for admirers while at the same time one is falling to bits!
It was noted, R2, and yes, offensive. But this is the same year Kate Hepburn portrayed a Chinese freedom fighter in Dragon Seed (quite awfully too). After seeing that, I'm willing to forgive a black doll.
Bump. It's on again right now...
Fanny Skeffington in the novel is supposed to be a great beauty. Bette, admittedly is not, but like Meryl Streep in Sophie's Choice, it's as if she wills herself to be beautiful. Of course, makeup and lighting help. I think that she was having an affair with the director of this film, Vincent Sherman too.