The Bad and the Beautiful
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The Bad and the Beautiful
Kirk Douglas plays the corrupt and amoral head of a major film studio in this Hollywood drama, often regarded as one of the film's industry's most interesting glimpses at itself. Actress Gloria Lorrison (Lana Turner), director Fred Amiel (Barry Sullivan), and screenwriter James Lee Bartlow (Dick Powell) are invited to a meeting at a Hollywood sound stage at the request of producer Harry Pebbel (Walter Pidgeon). Pebbel is working with studio chief Jonathan Shields (Kirk Douglas), whose studio is in financial trouble and needs a blockbuster hit. If these three names will sign to a new… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 95%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Douglas gives a terrific study of male ego, all relaxed charm and going places."
‑ Cath Clarke, Time Out
"The Bad and the Beautiful took home a quintet of Oscars from 1953's ceremony and in its title alone we have possibly the greatest ever description of Hollywood."
‑ Emma Simmonds, The List
"Hollywood here looks diabolically seductive."
‑ Peter Bradshaw, Guardian
"Three disjointed stories awkwardly connected by a frayed thread."
‑ Wesley Lovell, Cinema Sight
"In Minnnelli's hands, the noirish melodram is less critical of Hollywood and more ambiguous in depicting the tawdry absurdities and operatic splendors of a bizzare industry, in which the players are more of frustrated dreamers than cold manipulators."
‑ Emanuel Levy, EmanuelLevy.Com
"Under Minnelli's direction it becomes a fascinating study of a man destroyed by the 50s success ethic, left broke, alone, and slightly insane in the end."
‑ Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
"A warts-and-all portrait of Hollywood at its zenith, a tale of how the bad created something beautiful."
‑ Philip French, Observer [UK]
"A gaudy soap opera that also manages to satirise gaudy soap operas. Hows about that?"
‑ David Jenkins, Little White Lies
"If it's not quite Sunset Blvd., Vincente Minnelli's The Bad and the Beautiful stands on its own as a scathing portrait of Hollywood's cutthroat ways and means."
‑ Gabe Leibowitz, Film and Felt
"Classic take on classic Hollywood."
‑ Nell Minow, Movie Mom at Yahoo! Movies
"Charles Schnee's whip-smart script, packed with sharp one-liners and passionate dialogue is a pitch-perfect accompaniment to the noir-ish look of Robert Surtees's cinematography."
‑ Eithne Farry, Electric Sheep
"Not quite Sunset Boulevard but almost."
‑ Derek Malcolm, This is London
"Even without a knowledge of the background, this is sharp, cynical fun."
‑ Philip Kemp, Total Film
"Dramatically strange - but visually splendid - inside look at Hollywood film making."
‑ Michael E. Grost, Classic Film and Television
"The Bad and the Beautiful (1952) is director Vincente Minnelli's (and producer John Houseman's) quintessential movie about Hollywood and moviemaking."
‑ Tim Dirks, Tim Dirks' The Greatest Films
More reviews for The Bad and the Beautiful on Rotten Tomatoes