USA Today - 10/03/1997
"...The Bette Davis-Joan Crawford teaming still packs a punch in this onetime surprise hit..."
Total Film - 10/01/2000
"...The leads are suitably poisonous, and the line between life and art blurred as clips from their films are used as the Hudson's own. Creepy..."
Description by OLDIES.com:
Director Robert Aldrich's story: a thriller about an aging ex-vaudeville child star waging a psychotic reign of terror over her crippled ex-movie star sister. His stars: Bette Davis and Joan Crawford. His battle to make the movie: an uphill one. But the eerie, shock-laden result was a deserved smash. Davis won her 10th Academy Award nomination for her acid portrayal of the grotesque Baby Jane. Nominated for five Academy Awards and an Oscar winner for Best Costume Design, What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? is a mirthful masterpiece of the macabre.
As a child, Jane Hudson (Bette Davis) was a pampered vaudeville star known to the world as Baby Jane while her younger sister, Blanche (Joan Crawford), led a quiet life in her considerable shadow. Decades have passed and now Blanche is a beautiful, talented movie idol and Jane a lowly extra. When a car accident cripples Blanche, binding her to a wheelchair, Jane sees her opportunity for revenge and assumes the role of caretaker. Her newly gained power completes the transformation of the sugar-sweet child star into a nightmarish caricature of Baby Jane. As she does everything she can to make her sister's life a living hell--including feeding Blanche a dead rat and brutally beating her when she tries to phone for help--Jane plots a comeback, aided by shifty musical director Edwin Flagg (Victor Buono).
Director Robert Aldrich (KISS ME DEADLY) composes the strangest and most unsettling film of his career, creating a blueprint for future psycho-thriller filmmakers to follow. Renowned offscreen rivals Davis and Crawford revived their flagging careers with two stunning performances, and Buono received an Academy Award nomination for his supporting role. Creepy, campy, grotesque, and terrifying, the wildly over-the-top WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO BABY JANE' is a disturbing and unforgettable film.
Aging sisters--one a bitter former child star, the other an actress whose career was ended by a crippling car wreck--duke it out in this campy shocker.
Black Comedy |
Character Study |
Essential Cinema |
Kidnapping And Missing Persons |
Mental Illness |
Physically Impaired |
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