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Directed by Robert Aldrich

United States 1962 134 mins.

Robert Aldrich directs one of the most mythical productions in Hollywood history, the lone film which co-starred longtime personal and professional rivals Joan Crawford and Bette Davis, whose dynamic is brilliantly channeled into this unhinged work of the latter-day studio system. Baby Jane Hudson (Davis in an Academy Award-nominated turn, her last) is a faded vaudeville star; Blanche Hudson (Crawford), her sister, achieves much more success as an actress but in 1935 is paralyzed in a suspicious car accident. Three decades later, the sisters live together but Jane’s mental health is rapidly deteriorating. Blanche, wheelchair-bound, has few options to escape Jane’s growing rage, the culmination of a lifetime of playing second fiddle. Shot by legendary cinematographer Ernest Haller, who had earlier shot both Crawford (Mildred Pierce, Humoresque) and Davis (most of her early Warner output including Jezebel and Dark Victory), What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? has “one of Hollywood’s best gothic grotesqueries.”—Roger Ebert.

Genres: Melodrama

Appears in: Bette & Joan