“A Life of Her Own” on DVD
Year of Ann Dvorak: Day 149
I have spent years extolling the virtues of Ann’s abbreviated performance in A Life of Her Own. Now you can see for yourself, courtesy of the Warner Archive. The 1950 M-G-M melodrama starring Lana Turner and directed by George Cukor came at the end of Ann’s career, and is arguably the one she deserved an Oscar nod for. She clocks in at around 10 minutes of screen time, but dominates the entire film as a washed-up fashion model who serves as an omen for Lana who is the new kid on the block. Unfortunately, Ann exits the movie via a high-rise window pretty early on, and you may spend the rest of the movie hoping she survived the fall. I know that’s what I thought the one time I sat through the entire thing back in 1997.
A Life of Her Own really drives home just how powerful Ann could be onscreen when she had a director of Cukor’s caliber. However, the movie fell flat at the box office, and Cukor himself hated it, so Ann’s performance did not garner the attention it should have at the time. $18.95 may seem like a high price for 10 watchable minutes of a film, but Ann’s performance is so good that I think it’s worth paying $1.90 a minute to watch it.