Saturday, August 13, 2011

Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte (1964) (2nd time)

An aging, reclusive southern belle, plagued by a horrifying family secret, descends into madness after the arrival of a lost relative. [imdb]

Nominated for 7 Oscars:

Best Supporting Actress: Agnes Moorehead
Best Cinematography, Black-and-White
Best Original Score
Best Original Song
Best Editing
Best Art Direction, Black-and-White
Best Costume Design, Black-and-White

The story behind this film is maybe much more interesting than the film itself; as you know, it was supposed to reteam real-life rivals Bette Davis & Joan Crawford, but Bette did all she could to push Joan away from the project, and got it her way. An entire soap opera behind it, and I recommend the trivia page on imdb for details.

I knew this was gonna be cheesy, with a feeling of B-series horror. I remembered it like that, but it actually proved much more satisfying. The second time around I learned to appreciate Agnes Moorehead's performance - I actually thought she was quite great as the loud-mouthed noisy housekeeper; it's overacting at its best. The screenplay is kinda messy, but Aldrich's directing is quite solid, something you wouldn't expect from a horror flick. Personally, I'm also a bit surprised Bette Davis didn't get nominated for this; sure, it's a performance gone to far at times, but it does have its highlight, and the field was pretty weak.

My rating for this film: 7.5/10. It's no Baby Jane, and I might be a bit too generous, but it does have its charm, for sure.


  1. It's deliciously camp that whilst not as iconic as Baby Jane seems more likely and much more fun to watch.

  2. much more technically efficient that I remembered it to be.