The Actress (1953)
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Critic Reviews for The Actress
It has charm and humor, but not enough plot to last a full-length movie.
Ruth Gordon's memoirs of her New England girlhood have been turned into a warm, funny movie.
An autobiographical snapshot in time of Ruth Gordon's life as a young determined girl with the dream of being on the stage, the dream of being an actress. A wonderful script penned by Ruth Gordon herself!
Sadly, if she was guilty of trying too hard or of trying in the wrong way, Cukor appears totally and uncharacteristically checked out... The Actress exposes the kinds of fraying seams that Cukor was usually so careful to conceal even in tattier projects.
Audience Reviews for The Actress
The beautiful Jean Simmons stars as Ruth Jones, a 17-year old girl in the early 20th century who wants to be an actress so badly that -- with typical teenage girl angst -- she wants to die. Her mother (Teresa Wright) knows of her dreams, but they are both afraid to tell Ruth's gruff seaman father (Spencer Tracy). When she finally tells him, she gets a surprise as to what she learns of her father's past. This film would have been entertaining on its own merits, but that it's based on fact makes it that much better. The story is based on the early years of Ruth Gordon, known for such roles as the Satan-worshipping neighbor in Rosemary's Baby and the life-affirming old lady in Harold and Maude. I am not familiar with Ruth Gordon's early work, but if Jean Simmons' swooning and weeping dramatics are any indication, Ms. Gordon was born to be an actress (although Spencer Tracy nearly steals the film from Simmons.)
Jean Simmons is great in this. Spencer Tracy and Teresa Wright good as her parents.
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