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Suddenly, Last Summer

Suddenly, Last Summer(1959)

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  • Wasn't Mercedes McCambridge Overlooked?

    • John West
    • 10/9/14

    First, what we have here is not so much a movie as theatre in movie format. And Joseph Mankiewicz was a master of this format. The storyline is offbeat for the times, the 50s. For this reason, it's a wonder that the film was such a success in the first place. Even the hint of homosexuality, pretty much like interracial marriage, was uncomfortable theme for many of the times.Second, comes an equally offbeat cast. Imagine Elizabeth Taylor, Kate Hepburn, Monty Clift, and, lo, Mercedes McCambridge. Whatever her place in any movie, you just couldn't overlook the presence of McCambridge, could you? I've been rather annoyed for that reason as I notice most reviews overlooked her dynamic presence altogether. But to go on, there's an undercurrent of mental instability running throughout the entire film. Which is probably why the film was so arresting in presentation and acting.Lastly, Joseph Mankiewicz! What else can be said about the genius director. I've never seen anything I didn't thoroughly ingest directed by him, "The Barefoot Contessa" and "All About Eve," for starters. I do admit I found it interesting he didn't direct "This Property's Condemned," also another Tennessee Williams standout. I've already rated the movie in detail. So no need to gild the lily! Suffice it to say that "Suddenly, Last Summer" was one of my all-time favorite theatre experiences!

  • Suddenly, Last Summer

    • Goetan
    • 8/24/13

    Sex and cannibalism, what terrific elements for an unforgettable vacation! Clift is a neurosurgeon bribed by Hepburn's wealthy widow, a role that earned her an Oscar nomination, to lobotomize her niece, Taylor in a role that won the Golden Globe. Some overly-chatty scenes go on for too long, prolonging the progression of the story, which is cleaner than Williams' play. A good, but not great adaptation of a work from Williams'. I give it 3.5/5.

  • Most annoying movie ever -- well, almost

    • Goobie
    • 8/24/13

    Too talky on the one hand, plus pronouncing the absent son's name in every other sentence is annoying as hell.

  • best movi about lifethank you

    • Margarita
    • 8/23/13

    best movie about life

  • Suddenly Last summer

    • jewelie
    • 7/8/12

    Suddenly Last Summer was in theaters so long ago and still shocks me today. It's so bizzare twisted and creepy. A very dark movie. It isn't for the weak for sure. Extremely well done and it hits you hard! It's so scary that people were able to just order a lobodimy for some one they wanted to get rid of if they had plenty of money. All actors were fantastic!

  • Suddenly last summer

    • cheryl
    • 3/27/10

    Katherine Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, and Montgomery Clift give powerhouse performances in this Tennessee Williams story. A mother goes to extremes to protect her son-hiding the events of his life and death from the public. Montgomery Clift plays a psychiatric doctor who carefully unravels the awful truth.

  • Suddenly on film

    • Jarrod McDonald
    • 2/20/10

    I think this is where Elizabeth Taylor really breaks out of the pack. She has come a LONG way from her child star days; gives a very fine performance; and she receives an Oscar nomination for this role (as does Hepburn for hers). Tennessee Williams' play is revised significantly for the Hollywood film: subplots and additional characters are added, and references to Sebastian being a homosexual are made less explicit. The cannibalism of Sebastian is still referenced, but of course, not directly shown. The story draws heavily from the author's own life, as his sister Rose had undergone a lobotomy in the 30s; and Williams himself was gay. Williams had also begun psychoanalysis in the mid-to-late 50s, and that is very much reflected in the scenes with Elizabeth's character and the doctor, played by costar Montgomery Clift. This is the third and final collaboration for Liz and Monty.

  • Suddenly, Last Summer (1959)

    • Jay Higgins
    • 8/19/09

    So very Tennessee Williams. Powerfully acted, what an amazing cast. Katherine Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor give amazing performances. Very heavy drama, at times disturbing and certainly controversial, especially for 1959. Great direction.

  • Best Movie Adaptation Of A Williams Play

    • J.R.
    • 6/23/08

    Striking photography; wonderful performances by Hepburn and Taylor; not Clift's finest work. Arguably, the best film adaptation of a Tennessee Williams play. The scriptwriters and director open up the small play beautifully. The horror and sadness Williams felt over his sister's lobotomy seemed to color all his dramas, not just this one which deals so obviously with the subject. How nightmarish (not to mention unethical) that a merely depressed and traumatized patient--especially one as articulate and full of life as Catharine--would even be considered a good candidate for this surgery....It's a shame that homosexuality couldn't be discussed frankly in the 1950s. Far less importantly, it's disappointing that filmmakers of that era made little effort to get all the costumes, makeup and hairstyles correct when shooting period pieces. The movie was set in 1937, but it would be difficult to guess that from Elizabeth Taylor's appearance in her Jean Louis wardrobe. Fortunately, Taylor's complete immersion in her character makes that a minor quibble....(BTW, some of your database information about this movie could be wrong. Frankie Merlo might be in the opening OR scene, but the extra who only vaguely resembles Gore Vidal is probably not the distinguished writer. Perhaps the sorta-look-alike was planted there as a joke? It's clearly stated in Vidal's official biography that he kept away from the SUDDENLY LAST SUMMER set; and, although Vidal writes in his memoirs about the movie and discusses his other acting gigs, there seems to be no mention in either volume of this extra work.)

  • Elizabeth Taylor triumps!

    • Donald Casey
    • 11/15/07

    An extraordinary movie experience with a sensational performance by Elizabeth Taylor and an overly mannered one by Hepburn.Not for the undiscriminating viewer.

  • one of my favorites

    • marcco
    • 8/2/07

    gothic drama written by the shakesphere of our times.great performances and directing serve tennessee williams vivd, poetic dialog.williams in his plays takes the most sordid situations and raises them to high drama, high art with his writing.everything is thrown in the mix here, much implied.... it's hard to tell what really happened, leaves you thinking.and hepburn's soliloquy about 'the face of god' and the sea turtles is a knockout.

  • Great Movie

    • Marcos Augusto
    • 6/19/07

    This film is on New York Times 1,000 best movies list. It has three great stars, in amazing performances. I've just bought the DVD. Also great screenplay and diraction.

  • Great film!

    • Rachael
    • 1/18/07

    To answer another poster's question, Sebastian was gay and a pedophile, but he and Violet would be more what would be called "emotionally incestuous", especially on her part. This is such a wonderful movie, especially the direction, as well as the performances (esp Hepburn and Taylor).

  • A cinematic Masterpiece!

    • FrankieCee
    • 12/19/06

    I don't know if it's possible to have a film noir in the blazing, scorching sunlight of the day. If it is, then this film is it! A distrubing, unsettling character study that reveals why some truths are better off remaining "unspoken". From the superb direction and phenomenal acting, to the very oft, disturbing settings and images, this film touches a nerve and then reverberates with precise direction, right down to the bone. A very intense film that should not be missed.

  • sordid but enthralling

    • michael york
    • 10/27/06

    one of the best adaptations of a williams play excellent performances i just wish that mankiewicz had been kinder to montgomery clift

  • Saw something about that movie...

    • Lori
    • 10/26/06

    Saw a synopsis on this movie and Elizabeth Taylor in general and from what I gathered, they implied that Elizabeth's character was sexually molested...pretty heavy stuff for back then! Sort of a dark looking movie about a sad subject. Not sure I can handle that one! All the best to ya'

  • Suddenly Last Summer

    • Alice Lumpkin
    • 5/12/06

    I just wrote a question about the movie I just watched on TCM (5/12/06) Sudenly Last Summer. Now I want to know if someone answers the questions, or is it just posted on some board? Please reply A. Lumpkin

  • Suddenly Last Summer Movie

    • Alice Lumpkin
    • 5/12/06

    I just watched the Movie, Suddenly Last Summer on TCM today 05/12/06 and I want to know just what it was really saying. Was Sebastian a homosectual, and/or was he and his mother sexually imtimate? I know this is probably a stupid question for some, but I do not know, and after watching it I want to know what it means. Thank you, A. Lumpkin

  • Classic Tennessee Williams

    • Bob Galvin-Oliphant
    • 2/15/06

    Elizabeth Taylor, Katharine Hepburn and Montgomery Clift are all excellent in this Tennessee Williams classic. Many good films have been made of William's plays, and Suddenly, Last Summer ranks among the best.

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