in about 100 words or less
US 129m, Colour
Director: Frank Perry; Cast: Faye Dunaway, Diana Scarwid, Mara Hobel, Rutanya Alda, Steve Forrest
Mommie Dearest is the film adaptation of Christina Crawford’s autobiographical novel of the same name about her relationship as the adopted daughter of famed Hollywood actress Joan Crawford. Playing the golden-age film star, Dunaway eerily transforms into the neurotic controlling overbearing woman who is more concerned with her image than her children. Despite the slapdash and overly melodramatic script, the film does well to portray the double lives that Hollywood stars were expected to live under contract to the studios. It fails, however, to answer any underlying motivations for Crawford’s bizarre behavior, nor does it do justice to her illustrious film career (Klaus Ming May 2015).