The Hearst and Davies Affair (1985) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Hearst and Davies Affair (1985)





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Movie Info

In the journalistic tradition of the late publishing mogul William Randolph Hearst, the made-for-TV The Hearst and Davies Affair is superficial, but undeniably entertaining. Robert Mitchum plays Hearst, who at 52 takes 18-year-old Ziegfeld Follies girl Marion Davies (Virginia Madsen) as his mistress. The film repeats the standard party line that Hearst was deeply in love with Marion and would have married her had his wife granted him a divorce. We are offered a wide-eyed, good-natured Marion Davies who embarks upon an acting career only because "The Boss" wants her to. The controversial Thomas Ince affair, in which a famous movie producer died under mysterious circumstances on Hearst's yacht, has long been a subject of speculation (did Hearst shoot Ince because the latter had been carrying on with Marion?) No opinions are offered herein: Ince dies, he's borne off the yacht, and we're off to the next anecdote. The climactic scenes, set in the huge Hearst estate of San Simeon, were actually filmed in a Canadian mansion (the Hearst heirs are still a bit touchy on the subject of Marion Davies). Originally telecast January 14, 1985, The Hearst and Davies Affair is enjoyable, but our vote still goes to Citizen Kane (1941), Orson Welles' a clef version of the same story.


Robert Mitchum
as Randolph Hearst
Virginia Madsen
as Marion Davies
Doris Belack
as Louella Parsons
Lorne Kennedy
as Charlie Chaplin
Caroline Yeager
as Millicent Hearst
George Touliatos
as Paul Block
Wayne Best
as Byron Sloane
David Clement
as Reporter
Billy Van
as Advisor
Ben Gordon
as Oscar Hirsch
Philip Craig
as Marion's Attorney
Don McManus
as Politician
Peter Jobin
as Party Guest
Jack Jessop
as Party Guest
Kathy Lasky
as Friend at Party
Norma Dell'Agnese
as Hollywood Reporter
David Bolt
as Politician #1
J. Winston Carroll
as City Editor
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