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140 Ratings

The Rose

Directed by Mark Rydell
United States, 1979
Drama, Musical


The story of the tragic life of a self destructive female rock star, modeled after Janis Joplin.

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The Rose Directed by Mark Rydell

Awards & Festivals

Academy Awards

1980 | 4 nominations including: Best Actress in a Leading Role

BAFTA Awards

1981 | 2 nominations including: Best Actress

César Awards

1981 | Nominee: Best Foreign Film

Golden Globes (USA)

1980 | 3 wins including: Best Actress in a Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical

1980 | 2 nominations including: Best Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical

Crucially, Midler’s actual fans populate the concert scenes: According to the Paula Meija essay that accompanies Criterion’s Blu-ray and DVD release of The Rose, the spectators for these performances, shot live at the Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles and Veterans Memorial Stadium in Long Beach, were Bathhouse Betty’s most ardent admirers. And it is during these segments that the film’s disregard for its time frame is most glaringly, and touchingly, obvious.
May 22, 2015
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Situated cinematically somewhere between concert documentary and filmed rock opera, The Rose plays out as nothing so much as Greek tragedy on a rock-and-roll stage, with Rose as the classic tragic hero whose terrible fate hangs over her from the movie’s opening moments. She will be brought down by a deeply familiar yet distinctly modern cocktail of malignancy: delusions of grandeur and the creeping depredations of addiction.
May 22, 2015
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It’s too busy lamenting the consequences of myth to realize that its fetishizing of suffering as part of the artistic process only furthers the myth. Although the film opens with a handful of reporters barging into Rose’s childhood home, seeking answers to why her career came to such an abrupt end, the filmmakers display little interest in deconstructing or interrogating the cult surrounding feminine pursuits of stardom.
May 20, 2015
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