Mildred Pierce [Criterion Collection] [2 Discs]

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aec.crrn2729dvd
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Synopsis

Joan Crawford won an Academy Award for her bravura portrayal of the titular heroine in Mildred Pierce. The original James M. Cain novel concerns a wife and mother who works her way to financial security to provide a rosy future for her beloved daughter, but encounters difficulties and tragedies along the way. Ranald McDougall's screenplay tones down the sexual content, enhancing its film noir value by adding a sordid murder. The film opens with oily lounge lizard Monte Beragon (Zachary Scott) being pumped full of bullets. Croaking out the name "Mildred", he collapses and dies. Both the police and the audience are led to believe that the murderer is chain-restaurant entrepreneur Mildred Pierce (Crawford), who takes the time to relate some of her sordid history. As the flashback begins, we see Mildred unhappily married to philandering Bert Pierce (Bruce Bennett). She divorces him, keeping custody of her two beloved daughters, Veda (Ann Blyth) and Kay (Jo Anne Marlowe). To keep oldest daughter Veda in comparative luxury, Mildred ends up taking a waitressing position at a local restaurant. With the help of slimy real estate agent Wally Fay (Jack Carson), she eventually buys her own establishment, which grows into a chain of restaurants throughout Southern California. Meanwhile, Mildred smothers Veda in affection and creature comforts. She goes so far as to enter into a loveless marriage with the wealthy Monty Beragon in order to improve her social standing; Beragon repays the favor by living the life of a layabout playboy, much to Mildred's dismay -- and possible financial ruin. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Product Details

Release Date
2/21/17 
Studio
Warner Home Video
MPAA Rating
NR -- Not rated
Length
1 hour, 51 minutes
Sound
  • Dolby Digital Mono
Region
  • USA & territories, Canada
Subtitles
  • English
Video Features
  • New 4k digital restoration
  • New conversation with critics Molly Haskell and Robert Polito
  • Excert from a 1970 episode of The David Frost Show featuring actor Joan Crawford
  • Joan Crawford: The Ultimate Movie Star, a 2002 feature-length documentary
  • Q&A with actor Ann Blyth from 2002, conducted by film historian Eddie Muller
  • Segment from a 1969 episode of the Today show featuring Mildred Pierce novelist James M. Cain
  • Trailer
  • Plus: An essay by critic Imogen Sara Smith
Number of Discs
2

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