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Intimate Portrait: Mae West [VHS] (1999)

Mae West , Rona Barrett  |  NR |  VHS Tape
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Mae West, Rona Barrett, Herbert Kenwith, Loretta Swit, Kevin Thomas
  • Format: Black & White, Color, NTSC
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: Unapix / a-Pix Ent.
  • VHS Release Date: June 1, 1999
  • Run Time: 60 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 1575238241
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #545,389 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews


Even long after her death, her name is synonymous with sex, yet Mae West, the brazen, busty blond bombshell, was as smart as she was sultry. Lifetime's Intimate Portrait: Mae West takes a look at the woman who challenged the sexual mores of her time and lit up the screen and stage with her audacious persona. Born Mary Jane in the late 1800s (her exact birth date is a mystery), she changed her name to Mae (with an e because "the y went down and an e went up," and she was going up) and began in vaudeville at the tender age of 8. Later, she worked in burlesque and on Broadway, writing, singing, and acting, until talking pictures came around; directors wanted actors with voices--and West certainly had a distinctive one. By 1935, she had the highest reported income of any woman in America. Her career spanned 80 years--a career in which she fought censors, cultivated an image of sexuality, and discovered Cary Grant. In her 60s she was still working onstage with bikini-clad muscle men and continuing with guest appearances; she wrote well into her 70s, her career drawing to a close after her appearance in 1978's Sextette, a film based on her own play. Using pictures, radio, film clips, and interviews with a producer, a film critic, her personal assistant, and TV commentator Rona Barrett, Intimate Portrait gives us a fascinating glimpse into the life of the woman considered to be the "greatest sexual icon of the 20th century." --Jenny Brown

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars They Done Her Wrong June 8, 1999
By A Customer
On the whole this video is a entertaining look at the life and times of one of this century's most important women. My only points of contention are that there is misinformation as well as a lack of any real rare material presented. We've seen the movies, how about some of her television and radio appearances. Granted they did excerpt a couple of lines from the radio shows. I think this video could have been better researched and put together.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not So Intimate December 4, 2006
Since there aren't very many documentaries on Mae West, one of the truly racy figures of the 1930s, it is easy to be drawn to this one. However, it has many flaws aside from being simply mediocre.

West began on the stage but made her way into films when she penned a controversial play called "Sex." The popularity of the play led her to films where she had a hand in the dialogue that went into them. Of course, things had to be toned down substantially, but West lured men with her ample body without shame. Her career lasted decades though she is most associated with the 1930s. She even made a screen appearance into old age.

The film clips used for this documentary aren't in the best shape. Also, not enough of the unknown parts of West's life are explored, so we hardly get an idea of who the woman was, only of what she did.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Mae West Is Unforgettable ! February 18, 2013
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Great video biography of Mae West. The eternal sex symbol lives on. Covers facts about her life I didn't know. Mae West will NEVER be forgotten.
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5.0 out of 5 stars WOW January 22, 2013
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What a life. I wish I could have met her. This biography was touching. Come up and see her sometimes
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