Posted on 1/26/13 07:32 PM
My God, there's another one. Another wonderful Joan Crawford movie that has been completely forgotten. I've lost count now of how many I have found.
"Daisy Kenyon" from director Otto Preminger may have a bad title, but it's an interesting film. It's a serious drama looking at the complexities of the human heart. Crawford plays a woman in love with a married man (Dana Andrews).
Whereas most 1940s films took a melodramatic approach to this subject matter, "Daisy" never becomes a weepie. It looks relatively deeply into its characters to examine their struggles. It wrestles in a very adult way with the complexities of imperfect marriages.
Made just after World War II, the film includes Henry Fonda as a somewhat shell-shocked vet trying to reintegrate into domestic life, feeling just a bit off-kilter. Fonda's lonely, disoriented character provides wonderful added dimensions that compassionately consider the plight of a million young men trying to deal with inner demons while acting as normal as possible.
Why has a movie with so much intelligence and heart been so forgotten?
I suspect that that "Mommie Dearest" thing did irrevocable damage to Crawford's reputation.
Americans can't see her anymore without thinking of that. It's too bad. She may have been a monster at home. But she had an extraordinary movie career and made a stunning array of films that were wonderful.