Opened: October 31, 1962
Directed by: Robert Aldrich
Starring: Bette Davis, Joan Crawford, Victor Buono, Marjorie Bennett, Maidie Norman, Anna Lee & B. D. Merrill
In an acting match that’s just intense on-screen as it was off-screen, What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? is a horror/thriller that brings the best out of its older stars Bette Davis and Joan Crawford.
Sisters Jane (Davis) and Blanche Hudson (Crawford) both have had their time in the spotlight while the other sister was cast to the shadows – Jane as a child star and Blanche as an adult actress. Now Jane is reluctantly taking care of her wheelchair-bound sister.
Davis and Crawford had a long-time rivalry and their actions on-set are legendary. While both excel in their roles, the screenplay allows for Davis to shine more. Jane struggles to let go of the past and is disappointed by her present, which Davis doesn’t do in a somber way, but rather in an intensely over-the-top manner.
Final say: Deliciously evil. ★★★★☆