All About Eve

All About Eve

DVD - 2008 | 2-disc special ed.
Average Rating:
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From the moment she glimpses her idol on Broadway, Eve Harington (Anne Baxter) strives relentlessly to upstage Margo Channing (Bette Davis). Cunningly stealing Margo's role, Eve then disrupts the lives of Margo's director boyfriend (Gary Merrill), and her other friends in this juicy, witty drama.
Publisher: Beverly Hills, Calif. : Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, [2008]
Edition: 2-disc special ed.
Branch Call Number: DVD ALL732
Characteristics: 2 videodiscs (138 min.) : sd., b&w ; 4 3/4 in.

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w
WhidbeyIslander
Aug 11, 2017

Crackling dialogue (Check), (mostly) great performances (Check), biting one-liners (Check). Anyone hoping to become a screenwriter would do well to study this film. Only quibble is that Margo is not much in evidence in the final act.

t
ThomasJWhiting
Jul 05, 2016

VERY GOOD 1950 b/w film with theatre background written for the screen and directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz. In many ways it's a Hollywood vs. theatre drama - and somewhat ironically, technique wise, it's very much filmed theater, with filmed stage scenes, etc.
Fun ending - and enjoyable brief young Marilyn Monroe appearances.

m
mswrite
May 11, 2016

Over six decades later "All About Eve" (loosely based on the short story originally published in Cosmopolitan, "The Wisdom of Eve") still packs a punch, thanks to writer-director Joseph L. Mankiewicz's stingingly observant screenplay and the personal best performances of a stellar cast headed by the formidable Bette Davis.

Look, I adore the elegant, witty Claudette Colbert ("It Happened One Night," "The Palm Beach Story," "Since You Went Away" etc.), but she was absolutely NOT the correct choice to play Margo Channing. Believe it or not the charming Miss Colbert was originally cast in the role but then injured her back on another film and so was out of the running. Mankiewicz then offered the script to Davis, who knew a winner when she saw one--and she desperately needed a winner.
After a series of flops Bette Davis's film career was seriously on the wane as the 1940s were coming to a close; she was ready, if not desperate, for a resurrection and found it in the role of the celebrated but insecure Bitch-Goddess Extraordinaire, Margo Channing. Accepting the part was an act of courage for Davis, who was dealing with some of the same issues besetting the character and looked every bit her real middle-age, even appearing without makeup in several key scenes. A bravura performance from one of the Great Stars of the Silver Screen.

Good collection of bonus materials are included in this 2-disc set, including an AMC (American Movie Channel, the precursor to TCM) behind the scenes documentary, two revealing portraits of Mankiewicz, two amusing advertising spots featuring Davis and Baxter, each being "interviewed" by a fawning reporter, and two commentary tracks. One track features co-star Celeste Holm, who confirms the Hollywood lore that she and Miss Davis did not get on during filming, mostly due to Bette's combative nature and insecurities. (Among other things, Bette was jealous of Holm's ability to laugh on cue.)
Dame Celeste was obviously advanced in years at the time of her commentary participation and her oddly pitched, whispery voice reflects that; she is not particularly easy to listen to. Still, her insights and memories are interesting.

m
ManMachine
Jul 28, 2015

(Movie quote) - "Let's not get over-dramatic!"

To me, if there was one thing that actress, Bette Davis, definitely could not project, believably, on screen.... That one thing would have to be honest-to-goodness "sex appeal".

Like, I don't know about you other guys - But, for me, Davis (bulldog jowls, and all) projected about as much sexual allure as that of week-old roadkill. I ain't kidding. That woman was a real dog.

And if "All About Eve" was really supposed to be a realistic, behind-the-scenes look at the NYC Theatre Set (of the early-1950s), then working in that environment truly must've been one of the most horrible places in the entire world to be employed.

I thought that all of the hate, the jealousy, the treachery, the back-stabbing, and the sneering cynicism that certainly prevailed throughout "All About Eve" to certainly be enough to cure anyone (in their right mind) of ever wanting to pursue a career in this line of work - Ever. But, with that said - Are actors really considered to be in their "right mind" in the first place?

Anyway - Even though this 65-year-old, b&w movie had its fair share of good points, as well as its not-so-good points, I still say that it was well-worth a view in spite of its flukes and flaws.

*Trivia Note* - I think it's kinda interesting to note that actress Anne Baxter was the grand-daughter of famed architect, Frank Lloyd Wright.

s
singasong70
Apr 23, 2015

Mesmerizing. My new Favorite!

VV6 Mar 23, 2015

Classic Hollywood brings us a more sophisticated brand of sociopath than your standard modern crime show, but sociopath nonetheless. Surprisingly chilling and brilliant.

g
garycornell
Oct 15, 2014

Just an amazing film that properly hold a spot as one of the best films ever made. In 1951 it won 17 awards including Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor, Best Screenplay, Best Costumes and Best Sound. Anne Baxter refused to be in the Best Supporting Actress Category,. so she split the vote with Bette Davis and neither was selected though nominated for Best Leading Actress. A fitting result to a movie all about the politics of being a Broadway star. Bette Davis plays Margo Channing the clever and ruthless Broadway star. Anne Baxter plays an ambitious actress trying to work her way up the star status on Broadway. One wonders how much of the story is really how things work behind the scene for stars of either Broadway or Hollywood. The supporting cast is outstanding. Start with Celeste Holms, Gary Merrill, Thelma Ritter, and a young Marilyn Monroe. The movie is a triumph for Director Joseph L. Mankiewicz as he also wrote the brilliant screenplay. The film should have gotten an Oscar for it's cinematographer Milton Krasnor. Bette Davis had many great roles, but she might just thought Margo Channing to be her favorite. I think there was a lot of similarities between Margo and Bette. You be the judge though and please write your comments here on the KCLS web site. Thanks!
P.S. "All About Eve" has one the longest list of KCLS patron comments with a total of 8 patrons giving it a Five Star Rating. That is impressive!!

voisjoe1 Feb 10, 2014

“All About Eve” could also have been entitled “How to get to the Pinnacle in the Acting Profession,” as Anne Baxter plays an admirer of a great actress played by Bette Davis. As the movie progresses we find out Baxter’s Eve has more than admiration as her goal. This film’s director and screenwriter, Joseph Mankiewicz, won best director and best adapted screen play Oscars. This was the second straight year for Mankiewicz to win these awards, the only time for a director/screenwriter to win these two awards for two different films. In all, this film won six Oscars, including best film. It is a film about ruthless ambition and doing whatever it takes to get to the top. In this film, the person at the top, still has someone else pulling the strings.

d2013 Sep 21, 2013

Ms Bette Davis doing what she does best. Brilliant acting. Great movie.

m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

This is arguably writer/director Joseph L. Mankiewicz' best film. And to reiterate another's sentiments: Bette Davis and Thelma Ritter were superb. George Sanders, as well. Great movie. FIVE STARS.

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Quotes

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m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

Birdie (of all the fur coats): "The bed looks like a dead animal act."

m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

Lloyd Richards: "There are very few moments in life as good as this. Let's remember it. To each of us and all of us, never have we been more close, may we never be farther apart."

m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

Lloyd Richards: "There comes a time that a piano realizes that it has not written the concerto!" Margo Channing: "And you, I take it, are the Paderewski who plays his concerto on me, the piano?"

m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

Margo Channing: "I detest cheap sentiment!"

m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

Addison DeWitt: "I think the time has come for you to shed some of your humility. It is just as false not to blow your horn at all as it is to blow it too loudly." Eve Harrington: "I don't think I've done anything to sound off about." Addison DeWitt: "We all come into this world with our little egos equipped with individual horns. Now, if we don't blow them, who else will?"

m
Monolith
Mar 19, 2013

Addison DeWitt: "What do you take me for?" Eve Harrington: "I don't know that I'd take you for anything." Addison DeWitt: "Is it possible, even conceivable, that you've confused me with that gang of backward children you play tricks on; that you have the same contempt for me as you have for them?" Eve Harrington: "I'm sure you mean something by that, Addison, but I don't know what." Addison DeWitt: "Look closely, Eve. It's time you did. I am Addison DeWitt. I am nobody's fool, least of all yours."

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