Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.
USA, 1958. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Screenplay by John Patrick, Arthur Sheekman, based on the novel by James Jones. Cinematography by William H. Daniels. Produced by Sol C. Siegel. Music by Elmer Bernstein. Production Design by William A. Horning, Urie McCleary. Costume Design by Walter Plunkett. Film Editing by Adrienne Fazan.
Frank Sinatra falls asleep on a bus in a drunken stupor and wakes up the next morning in his home town, still wearing his army uniform and toting a sweet prostitute (Shirley MacLaine) behind him. Figuring that it was what he wanted to do next with his life anyway, he decides to stay and try to make something of himself. Unfortunately, adjusting to small town life after World War II is no easy task, and his personal demons keep getting in his way of success. MacLaine shines in her role, though the part itself is just another self-sacrificing floozy who understands that she’s not meant to get the good things of life after she truly falls in love with Frankie, giving him to good blonde girl Martha Hyer instead. It’s an enjoyable Cinemascope soaper, even if it is too long and not very strongly written.
Academy Award Nominations: Best Actress (Shirley MacLaine); Best Supporting Actor (Arthur Kennedy); Best Supporting Actress (Martha Hyer); Best Costume Design; Best Song (“To Love And Be Loved”)
Golden Globe Award Nomination: Best Actress-Drama (Shirley MacLaine)