59 of 70 people found the following review helpful
But you are, Blanche. You ARE in that chair!,
This review is from: What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (DVD)
This is one great movie! "What Ever Happened to BabyJane?" is, as stated in Amazon's description, the story of twoaging sisters, each in her own way connected with show business.
Now the good stuff. The sisters are played by Bette Davis and Joan Crawford (the only time the two ever acted together) to absolute perfection. Crawford is wonderful in the role of crippled sister Blanche, but Miss Davis absolutely walks away with the show as the former "Baby" Jane Hudson. The role is meatly and she revels in it! It is obvious that Miss Davis held the philosophy that, if you are going to go over-the-top, don't apologize. And she doesn't. She goes WAY over-the-top with a gleeful abandon that is infectious.
The way she taunts her wheelchair-bound sister (the title quotes one of Jane's best lines), serves her meals of dead rodents and ex-pets, kicks her in the gut, mocks her ever-so-proper speech, etc. It's all so delicious. And check out the ballet that she does to one of the songs from her childhood vaudeville act. Bette Davis was obviously having the time of her life, and so do the viewers of this classic.
For the DVD edition, there are disappointingly few extras, but Davis is credited with developing the absolutely hideous hair and makeup combinations she sports while slouching about the house in her scuffs and house coat (Director Robert Aldrich said that, while he loved the look, he never would have had the nerve to suggest such a thing to Bette Davis).
Joan Crawford was in fine form, as well. But for Jane to be able to be credible doing the things she did, Blanche had to be the "straight man". Crawford or Aldrich knew this and Blanche behaves accordingly. Consequently, it is Bette Davis' Jane who has the best lines and the showier part in general.
If you have never seen this movie, get it. If you have, go back and visit the Hudson sisters again. Then you might want to write a letter to YOUR daddy.