Outfest Executive Director Stephen Gutwillig performed his last official duty last night before stepping down to join a new group. He chose to screen the 1950 classic All About Eve. Joseph L. Mankiewicz wrote and directed, and the equally legendary Darryl F. Zanuck produced. The dialogue holds up to this day, and I consider it one of the best movies ever about Hollywood and theatre. Bette Davis is Margo Channing, a fading actress of a certain age (OK, my age). She is eventually supplanted by Eve Harrington, whose character undergoes a remarkable transformation from mousy sycophant to conniving backstabbing competitor with the help of poison pen theatre reviewer Addison Dewitt (played to perfection by George Sanders). The movie is high camp and dripping with irony and cynicism. It also has a then-unknown Marilyn Monroe as an aspiring actress. The movie is framed by the award scene above, so viewers know that Eve is going to change from when we first meet her. The final scene is not only perfectly shot, but very chilling. I’d put this on my must-see list for everyone.
- Movie comment: Mr. Brooks