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Whatever Happened to Aunt Alice? [VHS]
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Customer Reviews:

  • Good acting, but not much more
    Storywise this stylish movie made in the Arizona desert does not offer anything special, it's been done before and after: Older women who are deliciously bad and do not hesitate to plan and commit murder. The performances of the main actresses are a great delight to watch (especially the opening scene). Geraldine Page is hamming it up nicely, Ruth Gordon for once does not play a brash, vulgar loudmouth but is emulating the great character acress Thelma Ritter as Page's servant. At moments this movie made me think of John Sayle's Passion Fish. Was it an inspiration for that truly great piece of art?...more info
  • FUN SLEEPER
    I vividly remember seeing this little flick back in 1969 when it was originally released theatrically and I found it much more enjoyable than the supposedly "bigger" movie of the double feature. The acting of Gordon (she's not especially eccentric in this) and Dunnock is first-rate as usual yet it's Page who has a field day in her incredible tour de force interpretation of the murderous middle-aged Mrs. Marrable. Scenes which linger in the memory are many: when Page catches Gordon combing out her wig collection, Marrable winning a contest (she discovers this one evening while tipsy & opening her mail), a scene has Page tear into Gordon "Did I say you could help yourself? " after Ruthie's poured herself a brandy; there's the "Gordon dumping scene" and the ironic ending which concerns postage stamps. I'm so glad this little gem has found it's way to video; Geraldine Page was surely one of the finest actresses to grace the stage and screen; her acting is a fascinating joy to behold!...more info
  • 5 Stars for Geraldine Page; 0 Stars for Anyone Else Involved
    Geraldine Page is one of the greatest actresses of our time. This movie, paradoxically, perhaps demonstrates this better than her more "serious" work such as "Sweet Bird of Youth," "Summer and Smoke" and "Interiors" because SHE'S THE ONLY PERSON INVOLVED WITH THIS MOVIE WHO HAS A SHRED OF TALENT (besides Mildred Dunnock, whose role is too small to help). In the other movies I mention, Page is in the company of talented actors and directors; in this movie, she's surrounded by a complete lack of talent and/or ability. Page gives a spectacularly wonderful performance and a witty characterization that is altogether astonishing in the midst of so much bad acting and directing. THE ACTING STINKS, STINKS, STINKS EXCEPT FOR PAGE. Ruth Gordon was always a ham, and she is here too. Still, she presents enough of a character for Page to work against. The music score is ridiculously overbearing, inappropriate, hysterical and maudlin, sometimes all at the same time. My copy of the DVD has the worst sound of any DVD in my collection. The voices are tinny, weak and distant, while the scritching violins are in your face, along with every telephone ring and every other unimportant sound effect. Clearly Anchor Bay or whoever is responsible for producing the DVD botched the entire sound process. The best scene in the movie is with Page and the dog. This is because Page is the only one with lines in this scene, and she shows how she can rise above the tawdriness of the production and the (lack of) direction. Still, even her purring-est, steeliest, scorching line readings barely make it past the "music." I've waited for years to own this performance, and I'm grateful that I can see Geraldine Page at the height of her powers (but, then, when wasn't she?), but I'm disgusted by the low production values of the DVD presentation (not to mention of the movie itself). The voices at times literally buzz with distortion. Unless you're an admirer of Geraldine Page, stay away. If you do appreciate her, however, it's definitely worth putting up with all the garbage around her. Fortunately, the DVD has chapter stops, so you can skip a lot of the muck. My recommendation: press the forward-scan button every second Page is not onscreen. But you might be tempted to scan backwards and watch Page again and again as she gets a chance to do her thing, which is great character work and an astonishing variety and depth of emotion. I look forward to quality DVD releases of "Sweet Bird of Youth" and "Summer and Smoke" in particular, but Geraldine Page is virtually flawless in everything she ever did....more info
  • "Baby Jane" meets "Sweet Charlotte"
    Geraldine Page and Ruth Gordon are the formidable females of this Gothic "What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?"/Hush...Hush, Sweet Charlotte" spin-off. Page is an Arizona widow who maintains her very comfortable lifestyle by murdering her housekeepers and appropriating their savings. Gordon is a tough amateur sleuth who hires on as her next victim in hopes of getting to the bottom of missing persons mystery. A very fine, entertaining tale of suspense. I dare say it's more than a little farfetched at times, but the strong performances by the veteran leading ladies are always believable and make the film reach the pinnacle of art. The newly restored, widescreen edition from Anchor Bay is absolutely flawless and is a must!!!!!...more info
  • DELIGHTFUL GRAND GUIGNOL......
    Anchor Bay is to be graciously commended for delivering this delicious concoction to DVD. A very black murder tale is marvelously enacted by two top ladies of the old school of acting---Geraldine Page and Ruth Gordon. They are perfectly matched in a deadly cat & mouse game that is one of the most entertaining films of it's kind. Page is left high & dry (she thinks) after her husband passes on so she moves to Arizona to make the best of it. However, her lifestyle is not to be denied as she carries out a wicked plan to supplement her modest income. What follows is a series of "companions" who mysteriouly disappear after allowing Page to "invest" their savings. Meanwhile, new pine trees keep popping up around her house. This is where Gordon comes in as she hires on to be the next companion. Actually on the trail of a friend who vanished while employed with Page, she has to match wits with the devious woman while trying to keep one step ahead of her at all times. The two Grande Dames go at it in high style and the viewer can just sit back and enjoy. Rosemary Forsyth co-stars as a new neighbor with a small son and a dog who runs afoul of Page and suspects something is wrong. The scene with Page trying to kill the dog (who just won't cooperate) is an amusing highlight. A most enjoyable thriller and very recommended---especially for fans of Page and Gordon....more info
  • The Best Movie Ever!
    I have been looking for this movie for ever. I cannot believe that I've finally found it. I remember when I first saw this in the movie theatre, and I just fell in love with both actresses. I am quite a movie buff, and I just can't say enough about this movie. If you have the opportunity to acquire, please do so. You won't regret it....more info
  • Awesome 60's camp comedy-thriller with Page and Gordon!!
    The 60's were a memorable decade for so many reasons and the film industry was no exception. After Bette Davis and Joan Crawford found success with Whatever Happened to Baby Jane which revived their careers for awhile at least, we saw more former leading ladies over fifty starring in horror films and psychological thrillers. Bette Davis went on to make Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte, Joan Crawford pretty much ran the show in Strait-Jacket, Olivia de Havilland starred in Lady in a Cage, Tallulah Bankhead in her final film performace did Die! Die! My Darling!, even the early 70's brought Shelley Winters into Whoever Slew Auntie Roo. WHTAA brought together stage actresses and Oscar winners Geraldine Page and Ruth Gordon. This is such a fun movie to watch if you are a fan of the genre. As we open, we find Page has been widowed and her deceased left her in a bunch of bad debts. What is a good, loyal wife of many years to do? Well, in Page's case, the solution is to do away with lonely housekeepers that have no family and small nest eggs stashed away so she can claim all the dough. Gordon plays a friend to one of Page's victims and she knows something isn't right. She goes undercover as the new housekeeper herself to get to the truth putting her own life in danger! Those who remember Ruth Gordon from Rosemary's Baby may think she's getting her "just desserts" here. The battle of the wits is on with a shocking conclusion that is sure to satisfy the most jaded filmgoer. Sit back, relax and enjoy this one in all its lurid glory! 5 stars all the way. Also recommended with Page: The Trip to Bountiful...more info
  • Pretty scary; definitely fun!
    The original poster of this movie really stayed in my memory! Even though I was four when the film first came out, I remember my family talking about the plot of murders and people buried in the garden. Over the years, I'd seen parts of it on TV, but finally broke down and bought a copy of the video. Definitely worth the money! While it's not the scariest movie I've ever seen, the premise is pretty creepy, not to mention macabre! I LOVED Geraldine Page's cackle sewn throughout the film; that really added a campy twist. All the acting was fine, and for an addition to the 'Baby Jane' genre, 'Aunt Alice' definitely holds its own!...more info
  • Strange, witty, and good!
    This is a really strange movie. I had never heard of it before a friend loaned it to me, but I'm glad I watched it. This movie is the very definition of "dark comedy." People are murdered, there is suspense, and you never really laugh--yet you can't take the movie seriously! It is really quite amusing all around.

    The basic plot is that a woman whose husband dies leaving her penniless, decides she can't give up her extravagant lifestyle. So she puts on a convincing farce, and she devises an outrageous scheme for continuing in her lifestyle. The result is a very clever movie that keeps you guessing and at the same time sticks a grin on the corners of your mouth.

    The acting by Geraldine Page and Ruth Gordon is very good, and I especially like Gordon. If you have ever enjoyed the acting of either of these ladies, I would venture to say you will enjoy this one as well.

    Oh, and the "punch line" at the end is good too!
    ...more info
  • Ultimate Camp Classic is an enormous unheralded gem
    campy thriller, brilliantly acted by its main protagonists. The fantastic Geraldine Page stars as a psychotic widow with a penchant for growing the very sturdiest and handsome of Pine trees - her secret is human fertiliser in the form of a series of butchered companions. Slowly suspicion rises and a friend of one of the deceased, now fertiliser fodder, begins to catch on to Page's dastardly deeds. Geraldine Page delivers a tour de force performance as Claire Marrable - oozing a charming menace and evil with every breath. Yet there are severe undertones of humour and one senses that the actors involved would have a good cackle after every take. Page's performance rates with the most vintage camp EVER. She obviously relished and thoroughly enjoyed the role. Ruth Gordon, best remembered from the wonderful Harold and Maude, delivers a typically feisty and spunky performance as the Aunt Alice of the title. It is vintage stuff and works equally successfully as a taut thriller but best of all as the blackest and most wicked of comedies. Please also appreciate the totally schizo music score that is so appropriate for the film. A gem from director Robert Aldrich who gave us another cult favourite, Whatever Happened to Baby Jane...more info
  • Superlative Camp classic is also both funny and fairly scary
    WHATEVER HAPPENED TO AUNT ALICE (1969) Dir: LEE H KATZIN Stars; Geraldine Page, Ruth Gordon, Mildred Dunnock, Rosemary Forsyth, Robert Fuller

    Superlative campy thriller, brilliantly acted by its main protagonists. The fantastic Geraldine Page stars as a psychotic widow with a penchant for growing the very sturdiest and handsome of Pine trees - her secret is human fertiliser in the form of a series of butchered companions. Slowly suspicion rises and a friend of one of the deceased, now fertiliser fodder, begins to catch on to Page's dastardly deeds.

    Geraldine Page delivers a tour de force performance as Claire Marrable - oozing a charming menace and evil with every breath. Yet there are severe undertones of humour and one senses that the actors involved would have a good cackle after every take. Page's performance rates with the most vintage camp EVER. She obviously relished and thoroughly enjoyed the role.

    Ruth Gordon, best remembered from the wonderful Harold and Maude, delivers a typically feisty and spunky performance as the Aunt Alice of the title. It is vintage stuff and works equally successfully as a taut thriller but best of all as the blackest and most wicked of comedies. Please also appreciate the totally schizo music score that is so appropriate for the film. A gem from director Lee H. Katzin and producer Robert Aldrich who gave us another cult favourite, Whatever Happened to Baby Jane....more info

  • Whatever Happended to Aunt Alice?
    Lots of fun - definitely worth getting. Especially if you a fan of either Ruth Gordon or Geraldine Page....more info
  • scenery chewing by pros
    Geraldine Page is the champion scenery chewer of all time and "Whatever Happened to Aunt Alice" gives her a role to really chew. She gets to go over the top as a middle aged widow who hires old lady companions then kills them for their life savings. She gets to rage, go mad, murder and wear a horrendous fright wig that will thrill any fan of middle aged actresses in lurid question asking horror movies....more info
  • Dark Fun!
    While the movie certainly belongs to Geraladine Page and Ruth Gordon, I watched it because Robert Fuller was in it. And believe me, he's never looked better. I always liked him in Laramie and Wagon Train, and was delighted to see him in a non-cowboy role. Everybody else was pretty much over the top, but I'd watch it for him any day!...more info
  • mary mary see how your garden grows
    you have to love geraldine page and ruth gordon,two of the most underrated stars.it's great to see them both .a great piece of story telling and again in the vein of whatever happened to baby jane.just imagine bette davis doing this.awesome.
    a great film and wonderful cast
    buy it now,you wont be disappointed...more info
  • An excellent mixture of chills and dark comedy.
    Don't let the title fool you. This is not a parody of WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO BABY JANE?. AUNT ALICE is its own little film, and what a nifty one it is. The great Geraldine Page stars as Mrs. Marrable, a widow whose husband left her only a stamp album. Unable(and unwilling) to cope with poverty, Mrs. Marrable is able to live up to her station by devising a plan that consists of hiring-then murdering housekeepers for their private incomes. The plan works very well until Mrs. Marrable makes the mistake of eliminating wispy Miss Tinsley(Mildred Dunnock) whose feisty friend, Mrs. Dimmock(the delightful Ruth Gordon), promptly applies for a position at the Marrable residence in order to solve this bizarre missing-persons mystery. Theodore Apstein's script(based on the novel 'The Forbidden Garden' by Ursula Curtiss) is a superlative mixture of spine-tingling suspense and dark comedy. The supporting cast performs competently enough, but the film ultimately belongs to Page and Gordon who both turn in positively flawless portrayals. The DVD is an absolute must for collectors. DVD lovers may at first be put off by the lack of extra material on this particular release, but it does include the original theatrical trailer(which isn't included on the VHS release), and the film itself never looked better. Highly recommended!...more info