To escape the boredom of her sad existence, Beatrice Hunsdorfer goes through the small the ads and lonely hearts every day. She spends most of her time locked away at home, chain smoking cigarettes. Her father is dead; her son was killed in Korea; her husband left her. The men she tries to interest are both fascinated and disgusted by her. To make ends meet, she tries to sell dancing classes over the telephone. She also rents one of her rooms to people that are even stranger than her. One of her two daughters studies the effects of gamma rays on marigolds. The effects are weird: the seeds of the flowers suffer genetic mutations that seem to partially destroy them. –Cannes Film Festival
Screen legend, superstar, and the man with the most famous blue eyes in movie history, Paul Newman was born in 1925 in Cleveland, Ohio, the son of a successful sporting goods store owner. He acted in grade school and high school plays and after being disharged from the navy in 1946 enrolled at Kenyon College. After graduation he spent a year at the Yale Drama School and then headed to New York, where he attended the famed New York Actors Studio. Classically handsome and with a super abundance of sex appeal, television parts came easily and, after his first Broadway appearance in “Picnic” (1953), he was offered a movie contract by Warner Brothers. His first film, The Silver Chalice (1954) was nearly his last. He considered his performance in this costume epic to be so bad that he took out a full-page ad in a trade paper apologizing for it to anyone who might have seen it. He fared much better in his next effort, Somebody Up There Likes Me (1956), in which he portrayed boxer Rocky Graziano… read more
Not very cinematic, but loaded with unlikely charm and funny lines, a real actor's movie. Nell Newman is ideal as the smart, asocial daughter -- amateur, the way all child actors should be. I wanted to pay her college tuition and lay waste to her enemies; anyone who comes away from this not feeling that way should not spawn. Woodward is almost too appealing. What would this movie be like with an uglier actress?