Too Much, Too Soon (1958)

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As a member of one America's great acting families, it was expected that actress Diana Barrymore would also have a distinguished career. But like her father John, Diana had a destructive alcohol addiction and her career, though promising, never panned out. This tragic drama is based on her autobiography.
Rating:
NR
Genre:
Drama
Directed By:
Written By:
On DVD:
Runtime:
Studio:
Warner Home Video

Cast

Errol Flynn
as John Barrymore
Murray Hamilton
as Charlie Snow
Ray Danton
as John Howard
Dorothy Malone
as Diana Barrymore
Efrem Zimbalist Jr.
as Vincent Bryant
Kathleen Freeman
as Miss Magruder
Martin Milner
as Lincoln Forrester
John Dennis
as Walter Gerhardt
Ed Kemmer
as Robert Wilcox
John Doucette
as Crowley
Michael Mark
as Patterson
Larry J. Blake
as Reporter
Neva Patterson
as Blanche Oehlrichs/Michael Strange
Louis Quinn
as Assistant
Paul Bryar
as Bill
Robert Ellenstein
as Gerold Frank
Jay Jostyn
as Imperial Pictures Executive
Herb Ellis
as Assistant
Larry Blake
as Reporter
Jack Lomas
as Reporter
Nesdon Booth
as Spectator
Francis De Sales
as Imperial Pictures Executive
Edward Kemmer
as Robert Wilcox
Jack Rice
as Druggist
Gail Bonney
as Nurse
Sid Tomack
as Harry/Dick Harrison
Robert S. Carson
as Associate
Don Hayden
as Theater Manager
James Elsegood
as Diana's Tango Partner
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Audience Reviews for Too Much, Too Soon

Too Much, Too Soon (1958) -- [6.5] -- Dorothy Malone and Errol Flynn play father and daughter John and Diana Barrymore, real-life members of Hollywood's famous Barrymore family, both of whom suffered famously from alcoholism. Flynn is very good here in the final noteworthy role of his career. Malone, two years after her Oscar win for "Written on the Wind", is hit and miss -- less convincing as the younger Diana but better in her later, 'circling the drain' years. The first half of the movie is a tense and poignant look at John and Diana's estranged relationship. At John's spooky mansion -- like something out of "Citizen Kane" or "Sunset Boulevard" -- alcoholic fits of rage are balanced with genuine regrets and sincere pleas. The pathos is palpable, especially in Flynn's performance. After John dies at the movie's mid-point, the film shifts focus to Diana as she inherits her father's demons and begins her own downward spiral. Unfortunately, the film is a case of art imitating life... imitating art. Flynn, here playing his old drinking buddy John, would die at the age of 50 just one year after the film was released. Alcohol played a heavy hand in his body's rapid deterioration. And even though the film hints at a potential happy ending for Diana, the troubled actress would soon take her own life in early 1960 at the age of 38.

Scott Schirmer
Scott Schirmer

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