July 16, 2017

"41 years! I've been in this business, you know, I don't know why I'm still alive, but somehow it keeps on going. I feel I should be dead, it's been so long."

34 comments:

Yancey Ward said...

Hard to wrap my mind around the fact that she has been dead for almost 30 years.

madAsHell said...

She forgot to say "Get OFF my lawn, ya whippersnapper?"

madAsHell said...

Is whippersnapper a euphemism for masturbation?

William said...

Her views seem surprisingly balanced and sane.

William said...

If you're a movie star, it's very difficult to complain about the trials and tribulations of your career in such a way as to excite much sympathy from the audience. This effort is far better than that of Shia Laboef.

Feste said...

What kept Davis alive so long?

She kept reaching for Garbo. Comparative Witchcraft 101.

“Her instinct, her mastery over the machine, was pure witchcraft. I cannot analyze this woman’s acting. I only know that no one else so effectively worked in front of a camera.” Bette Davis on Greta Garbo.

Besides, when Davis said, “Fasten your seatbelts, its going to be a bumpy night!,” she spoke to me, personally, and nobody else but me. I'm responsible for her longevity.

gspencer said...

Value given; value received.

St. George said...

"Of Human Bondage." 1934 pre-code movie. What a performance.

tcrosse said...

Bette plugs some guy on the front steps, with cruel neutrality.

The Letter (1940)

Pete said...

Sounds like Althouse.

tim maguire said...

Did anyone catch the name of the book she recommends at the beginning? I listened to that part twice and can't make it out at all.

St. George said...

What Makes Sammy Run?

YoungHegelian said...

@tim,

The name of the book is What Makes Sammy Run by Budd Shulberg, published in 1941.

And, why, it's still available at the Althouse Amazon Portal!

St. George said...

No plastic surgery (apparently). Flabby arms. Jowl-ly. Mini-dress. Smoking a cigarette. Bragging. Sticking her fingers in a water glass. And down to earth.

What a dame.

Etienne said...

Interesting that her favorite book (at the time) about what Hollywood was like, was "What Makes Sammy Run". Written in 1941, and here she is talking about it in 1971!

By the way, she was my age in that interview, while at the time I was just graduating high school.

But the book, the book is covered in Wikipedia. One of the interesting (relevant) parts, is that Sammy is running people down. Not just running.

"Death is the only finish line. ...always thinking satisfaction is just around the bend."

This sounds just like the Democratic party and Hollywood today.

They are running - but running people down. Death is the only finish line. Death of American values.

The Godfather said...

It bothers me whenever I see someone smoke the way Bette did in that interview (and did in many, many of her movies). I know we all did it back then (I didn't quit until 1984), but it now seems like such a strange and unpleasant thing to do.

No offense intended to any current smokers on this thread. But you really ought to quit.

GrapeApe said...

She was great. Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte, Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? Brilliant.

rcocean said...

Oh, good grief. Ice Cream and Alcohol have killed more people then smoking. The vast majority of smokers don't die of smoke related disease.

And we're all going to die of something. The mortality rate of everyone alive is 100%

GrapeApe said...

Hey, Godfather, I will take your advice when you stop doing things I don't like.

David said...

She is dead. Didn't anybody tell her?

Kathryn51 said...

"All About Eve" - one of my all time favorite movies. I need to add it to my DVD library.

Althouse - is there a reason for this particular post? You usually give some sort of reason but I haven't paid much attention to today's earlier posts.

eddie willers said...

but it now seems like such a strange and unpleasant thing to do.

It's very pleasant, quitter!


On a more serious note, one reason I started questioning everything the "media" (and "authority") says was how smoking was more addicting than heroin blah, blah blah. I'll bet there are way more ex-smokers than smokers. Probably only 10% go the distance.

bagoh20 said...

Perhaps things have changed, becuase it seems that today the industry is not lacking for compliments, awards, out-sized and often instant fame, fortune, and accolades.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

Bette Davis leaves out the part of the story where Jack Warner had made the big gamble on her, she tried to get out of her contract with by claiming it was slavery. I'm sure Jack got a big laugh out of her saying she and other actors would have worked for less money and more compliments.

Tommy Duncan said...

I'm reminded daily:

“Old age ain't no place for sissies.”
― Bette Davis

Etienne said...

She was great. Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte, Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? Brilliant.

hagsploitation... :-)

Ann Althouse said...

"The Letter (1940)"

Love that one.

Another good one (especially because it has Claude Rains) is "Deception."

One that's not so good — despite Claude Rains — is "Mr. Skeffington." But the trailer is hilarious.

Ann Althouse said...

"No plastic surgery (apparently). Flabby arms. Jowl-ly. Mini-dress. Smoking a cigarette. Bragging. Sticking her fingers in a water glass. And down to earth."

The hands in the water glass part is hilarious. She's fishing out ice and puts it in another glass, and then she drinks from that glass. At some point she looks at her fingers... as if contemplating how clean or dirty they might be.

The Godfather said...

As I said above about quitting smoking, "No offense intended to any current smokers on this thread." To those who were nevertheless offended by my free advice, perhaps you never sat by the bedside of a 50 year-old friend you'd known since Jr. high, listening to his final labored breaths as he died of lung cancer. Yes, we're all going to die. Shall we go out in the back yard and play catch with a hand grenade?

JAORE said...

Hollywood Squares: What movie star is famous for saying, "What a dump"?
Paul Lynde: Dumbo

Michael Fitzgerald said...

My favorite Bette Davis movie is In This Our Life, directed by John Huston, with Olivia De Haviland, George Brent, Charles Coburn, Hattie McDaniel, Billie Burke, Dennis Morgan... Bette is pure evil in this one!

Bill said...

I love the scene in "Now, Voyager" where Charlotte first appears at the cruise ship in her new, glamorous incarnation. A cheer went up from the audience in the theater where I first saw it. Unforgettable moment.

Professional lady said...

I loved "the Letter" too. It's based on the short story and play by Somerset Maugham. No wonder it's so good. I remember I got my husband to watch it - he thought it was going to be a chick flick soap opera. Instead of sentimentality, he got subtlety, self realization, and moral dilemma. And Bette Davis was such a great actress. Another recent good one based on a work by Somerset Maugham is "the Painted Veil."

The Godfather said...

@Bill: In college in the '60's I saw "Now Voyager" with a bunch of my friends. When Paul Henreid lit two cigarettes at once, one for Bette one for him, we thought that was SO COOL, we all started doing it. I think I burned my nose that way once.