Baby Doll
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Tennessee Williams' 27 Wagons Full of Cotton was the basis for this steamy sex seriocomedy. Karl Malden stars as the doltish owner of a Southern cotton gin. He is married to luscious teenager Carroll Baker, who steadfastly refuses to sleep with her husband until she reaches the age of 20. Her nickname is "Baby Doll", a cognomen she does her best to live up to by lying in a crib-like bed and sucking her thumb. Enter crafty Sicilian Eli Wallach (who, like supporting actor Rip Torn, makes his film debut herein), who covets both Malden's wife and business. Malden's jealously… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Wallach as the vengeful Vacarro plays it to the hilt. Malden is cast to perfection and turns in a socko performance."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"Mr. Kazan keeps the courtship bouncing between the emotional and the ludicrous."
‑ Bosley Crowther, New York Times
"Tennessee Williams adapted his play in this provocative black comedy, directed with intensity by Kazan, and starring Carroll Baker in her Oscar-nominate performance as the child-bride."
‑ Emanuel Levy, EmanuelLevy.Com
"an impressively steamy story for its day with some moments of true greatness"
‑ Christopher Null,
"One of Elia Kazan's most underrated movies is his only pure comedy."
‑ Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
"Wickedly funny salacious black comedy."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"The movie hasn't aged a day in fifty years."
‑ Walter Chaw, Film Freak Central
"Regarded as scandalous when it was first released, Baby Doll has lost its shock value but retains a strong, sweaty Deep South sensuality."
‑ , Film4
"The grotesquely caricatured performances and the evocation of the baking, dusty, indolent homestead make for witty and compelling viewing."
‑ Geoff Andrew, Time Out
"An explosive, provocative black comedy from Tennessee Williams and Elia Kazan."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"I love this stuff; it's remarkably silly, yet the actors play it so straight you'd think it was Hamlet."
‑ John J. Puccio, Movie Metropolis
"Baby Doll (1956) has been called notorious, salacious, revolting, dirty, steamy, lewd, suggestive, morally repellent and provocative."
‑ Tim Dirks, Tim Dirks' The Greatest Films
More reviews for Baby Doll on Rotten Tomatoes