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Take My Advice: The Ann & Abby Story

8 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Twin sisters Esther and Pauline (both portrayed by Wendie Malick, Confessions of a Shopaholic) were inseparable as children, teenagers, and adults until they both became advice columnists—Esther writing as Ann Landers, and Pauline for ""Dear Abby."" The competition for readers, success and fame led to a public, decades-long feud that drove them apart. This is the fascinating true story of the brutal fight between family for the title of top advice maven in the country.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Wendie Malick, Robert Desiderio, Kenneth David Gilman
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Echo Bridge Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: November 2, 2010
  • Run Time: 90 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005RFI1
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #176,677 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Take My Advice: The Ann & Abby Story" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Acute Observer on June 27, 2006
Format: DVD
This film is about the famous columnists Esther Friedman ("Ann Landers") and Pauline Friedman ("Dear Abby") who were twin sisters and showed their talents by giving advice in their college newspapers in the 1930s. [Few went to college in those days.] They were both married in a double wedding. Eppie's husband Jules Lederer sold pots and pans at house parties; then he was drafted into the Army. Then Pauline's husband Morton Philips too. The scenes recreate 1940s America in a low-key way. You will see a lot of classic cars, clothing styles, and telephones from that era. But trains are missing! Eppie is involved with Democratic party politics in 1953 Wisconsin. Her husband Jules decides to start a new career in Chicago, a car rental business. Eppie visits city hall to look for a job, but winds up trying out for the "Ann Landers" advice column (the previous columnist used this pen name).

This film tells how the column is produced. Signed letters are answered. Eppie brings her work home; he husband advises her to get help with the work load. So she calls Popo for help. "Ann Landers" wrote snappy zingers to reply to serious questions; entertainment not advice. But would a serious person write a stranger for advice? Popo's experience leads her to follow the same career. She asks for a job with the San Francisco 'Chronicle', and "Abigail Van Buren" begins her rival career. Both represent the new cultural changes of the 1950s, the post-Depression times with new wealth and freedoms for most people. They reinvented the advice column as entertainment.

The use of 35 mm SLR cameras in the 1950s by newspapermen is an anachronism. Even TLR cameras were unlikely. The rivalry between them is shown; it wasn't just a publicity stunt. Note the modern electric typewriter by 1967.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Coffeechick on November 16, 2012
Format: DVD
As the other reviewer noted, there was some "prettying up" of the story of the twin sisters who vied with each other for readership of their advice columns. Wendie Malik does a smooth job of playing the twin sisters Esther and Pauline, who became well-known as Ann Landers and Abigail Van Buren, respectively. I thought it was fun to get even a tv version of their story, as Ann Landers' column was syndicated in our local paper, and everyone read it, whether they agreed with Ann's advice or not. Much of the time her advice was practical, but I remember she had a real issue with pre-marital sex, something she re-thought well after the sex revolution of the '60s. Still, an enjoyable production of the twins' stories.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By bookreader on September 8, 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
THIS IS AN ENTERTAINING LOOK AT THE LIVES OF ANN LANDERS AND HER SISTER ABBY. THEIR ADVICE COLUMNS WERE READ BY MANY AND THEIR ADVICE TAKEN TO HEART BY JUST AS MANY. WENDIE MALICK DOES A GOOD JOB PLAYING DUAL ROLES. PROBLEMS AROSE WHEN THE SISTERS FOUND THEMSELVES COMPETING FOR READERS.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Acute Observer on June 27, 2006
Format: VHS Tape
This film is about the famous columnists Esther Friedman ("Ann Landers") and Pauline Friedman ("Dear Abby") who were twin sisters and showed their talents by giving advice in their college newspapers in the 1930s. [Few went to college in those days.] They were both married in a double wedding. Eppie's husband Jules Lederer sold pots and pans at house parties; then he was drafted into the Army. Then Pauline's husband Morton Philips too. The scenes recreate 1940s America in a low-key way. You will see a lot of classic cars, clothing styles, and telephones from that era. But trains are missing! Eppie is involved with Democratic party politics in 1953 Wisconsin. Her husband Jules decides to start a new career in Chicago, a car rental business. Eppie visits city hall to look for a job, but winds up trying out for the "Ann Landers" advice column (the previous columnist used this pen name).

This film tells how the column is produced. Signed letters are answered. Eppie brings her work home; he husband advises her to get help with the work load. So she calls Popo for help. "Ann Landers" wrote snappy zingers to reply to serious questions; entertainment not advice. But would a serious person write a stranger for advice? Popo's experience leads her to follow the same career. She asks for a job with the San Francisco 'Chronicle', and "Abigail Van Buren" begins her rival career. Both represent the new cultural changes of the 1950s, the post-Depression times with new wealth and freedoms for most people. They reinvented the advice column as entertainment.

The use of 35 mm SLR cameras in the 1950s by newspapermen is an anachronism. Even TLR cameras were unlikely. The rivalry between them is shown; it wasn't just a publicity stunt. Note the modern electric typewriter by 1967.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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