East Side, West Side (1949) - Rotten Tomatoes

East Side, West Side1949

East Side, West Side (1949)





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

East Side, West Side Photos

Movie Info

Based on the novel by Marcia Davenport, a New York society lady (Barbara Stanwyck) and her husband (James Mason) have problems when he begins seeing a younger woman (Ava Gardner).

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Barbara Stanwyck
as Jessie Bourne
James Mason
as Brandon Bourne
Van Heflin
as Mark Dwyer
Ava Gardner
as Isobel Lorrison
Cyd Charisse
as Rosa Senta
Nancy Reagan
as Helen Lee
Gale Sondergaard
as Nora Kernan
William Conrad
as Lt. Jacobi
Raymond Greenleaf
as Horace Elcott Howland
Douglas Kennedy
as Alec Dawning
Beverly Michaels
as Felice Backett
William Frawley
as Bill, the Bartender
Lisa Golm
as Josephine
Tom Powers
as Owen Lee
Paula Raymond
as Joan Peterson
Wesley Bly
as Club Attendant
Rita Lynn
as Sistine Wive
Stella Soldi
as Sistine Wive
Peter Thompson
as Jock Ardley
Stanley Orr
as Bourne's Chauffeur
Jack Gargan
as Doorman
Tom P. Dillon
as Dan, the Old Policeman
Jewel Rose
as Hat Check Girl
Sandra Spence
as Cigaret Girl
Wilson Wood
as Reporter
Fred Hoose
as Reporter
Roger Moore
as Reporter
Betty Taylor
as Reporter
Harry Strang
as Fred the Doorman
Ferike Boros
as Grandma Sistina
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Critic Reviews for East Side, West Side

All Critics (2)

nothing but burnished dreck

April 29, 2009 | Rating: 2/5 | Full Review…

In the MGM tradition, it presents such uninteresting melodrama trash with style and makes it entertaining through its talented cast.

January 26, 2009 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for East Side, West Side

The main theme of this movie is one that has played out so many times in movies and books (and life): a man (James Mason) cheats on his wife (Barbara Stanwyck) with a woman (Ava Gardner) who gives him the thrills she cannot. The affair was over, but now she's back. He resists, but she points out that fireworks are not something to be taken lightly: "Maybe it wasn't love, maybe it was only chemistry, or the right combination, or a miracle. But most people drag through their whole lives without finding it. We both know that, don't we Bran?" And when he tells her he doesn't want to see her again, she purrs the sexy double entendre "I'll do exactly what you want Bran, exactly what you want." Gardner is just brilliant, oozing raw desire and channeling Jean Harlow in "The Red-Headed Woman" when she later gets slapped by Mason. Instead of being hurt, she eggs him on, knowing his passion is rising, and knows "that's what you're missing at home", and "you want to be rotten like me." Stanwyck plays the virtuous wife with quiet grace, though I thought she was too reserved in a showdown scene with the outlandishly mean Gardner. It's always great to see her movies though, and she does play 'hurt' and 'conflicted' well. There is a lot of star power here, with Cyd Charisse and Van Heflin also in the cast, and even an appearance from Nancy Davis, who of course would later be Nancy Reagan. As Stanwyck is betrayed by Mason, she turns to Heflin, and it's quite clear they're mutually attracted. Heflin is so smooth and likeable, and there is dignity in his acknowledgment of his love for her without resorting to adultery, in direct contrast to Gardner and Mason. Mason and Stanwyck may have gotten top billing, but I think they were upstaged by Heflin and Gardner. As the pressure ratchets up, both Mason and Stanwyck find themselves needing to make choices, though Mason's is disrupted by an event I won't spoil. There are some events that might be too convenient as it plays out, but there is reality and passion here, and I enjoyed this film.

Antonius Block
Antonius Block

Super Reviewer

A good drama about complicated romances.

Aj V
Aj V

Super Reviewer


A great cast isn't given much to do in this generally droll melodrama that gets slightly noirish. Barbara Stanwyck and James Mason are surprisingly unmemorable, but and early performance by Ava Gardner stands out (as if a young Ava Gardner couldn't stand out) for the few scenes she has but East Side, West Side. Otherwise this movie is just dated and for the most part forgettable.

Michael Gildea
Michael Gildea

Super Reviewer

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