Suddenly, Last Summer (1959)


“Is that what love is? Using people? And maybe that’s what hate is – not being able to use people. ” – Catherine Holly

Number of Times Seen – 1 (26 Nov 2019)

Brief Synopsis – A renowned brain surgeon is hired to lobotomize a young girl who was traumatized by seeing the death of her cousin the summer before.

My Take on it – This is yet another film that I had never heard of before coming across it during my quest t watch all movies that have garnered Oscar nominations for its actors.

The premise is quite interesting and they find a way to deal with some issues that usually were not discussed in the open at the time.

They touch upon these various subjects in a toned down way, but they are still quite present in the story and effective.

Montgomery Clift is quite good in the lead but he is easily eclipsed by both Katharine Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor who both give amazing memorable performances here in very complex performances

They were both nominated for Oscars for Best Actress but probably cancelled one another out so that neither would win.

The story moves along really well and I loved the way that they slowly reveal information that makes both the characters and the audience yearn to learn what truly happened.

The dialogue is expertly written and allows the viewer to get a clear picture of the various situations that these characters find themselves in from moral, psychological and even philosophical perspectives.

Bottom Line – Very interesting premise that works really well even though some of the issues dealt with in the film are toned down. Clift is fine in the lead but is eclipsed by both Taylor and Hepburn who each have very strong film presence with these complex characters. The story moves along really well and they do a nice job of slowly revealing information which makes both the audience and the characters even more curious to see what will eventually happen.  Both Hepburn and Taylor were nominated for Oscars for Best Actress and probably split the vote since both give excellent performances here. The dialogue is great and allows us to get a clear picture of the very complex situations that these characters find themselves in. Recommended

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Because of years of alcoholism and prescription drug abuse, Montgomery Clift was considered uninsurable due to chronic ill health. Ordinarily that would have meant he would have been fired and replaced, but his good friend Elizabeth Taylor saved his job by insisting she would not do the film without him. (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (8/10)

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One thought on “Suddenly, Last Summer (1959)

  1. Pingback: Did They Get it Right? – Best Actress – Oscars 1959 | MovieRob

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