7.4/10
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62 user 20 critic
The story of Frances Farmer's meteoric rise to fame in Hollywood and the tragic turn her life took when she was blacklisted.

Director:

Graeme Clifford

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jessica Lange ... Frances Farmer
Sam Shepard ... Harry York
Kim Stanley ... Lillian Farmer
Bart Burns ... Ernest Farmer
Christopher Pennock ... Dick Steele
James Karen ... Judge Hillier
Gerald S. O'Loughlin ... Lobotomy Doctor
Sarah Cunningham Sarah Cunningham ... Alma Styles
Allan Rich ... Mr. Bebe
Woodrow Parfrey ... Dr. Doyle
Rod Pilloud Rod Pilloud ... Martoni Kaminski
Patricia Larson Patricia Larson ... Mrs. Hillier
Jordan Charney ... Harold Clurman
Keone Young ... Chinese Doctor
Bonnie Bartlett ... Studio Stylist
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Storyline

Frances Farmer, a precocious Seattle teenager, takes unpopular social and political positions, to the mixed reactions of her parents. Frances becomes an actress and has some strong success in New York, but her refusal to bend her convictions and her outspoken (but sometimes naive) political expressiveness cause her difficulties, especially after she accepts a Hollywood contract. Torn between new-found success and intense feelings that she does not deserve the riches and fame she gains from the phoniness of Hollywood, Frances butts heads with studio executives and with her own mother, who revels in Frances's fame but provides Frances no emotional support. When drunken fights and arrests derail her career, Frances is sent to a psychiatric hospital with the acquiescence of her mother. What follows is a nightmare of poor treatment and psychological trauma, augmented by the increasing determination of Frances's mother to control her daughter's life. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Beautiful. Talented. Intelligent. Courageous. She Was Frances Farmer. She Should've Been The Silver Screen's Greatest Star. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

3 February 1983 (Argentina) See more »

Also Known As:

Frances, a Filha da Fúria See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$11,624, 26 December 1982

Gross USA:

$5,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Brooksfilms, EMI Films See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Harry York, a largely fictional character played by Sam Shepard, was based on a political radical named Stewart Jacobson who claimed to have been Frances Farmer's lover. People who were close to Farmer claimed he had never even met her. See more »

Goofs

A shot of the outside of a New York building shows many modern window air-conditioners, although this was supposed to be the 1930s or 1940s. See more »

Quotes

Lillian Farmer: When you get well, you're going to thank me.
Frances Farmer: No, you are not talking now! You listen. Now you can send me away and pretend I'm crazy and you can pretend I'm still your little girl who can't take care of herself. But Lillian, there is one thing that you cannot pretend any more and that is that I love you. Because I don't. I can't. Not after what you've done to me. Because I am still me. I've been trying real hard all this time to be me. And you, little sister - you haven't been any help at all.
See more »

Connections

References Rhythm on the Range (1936) See more »

Soundtracks

Piano Sonata in A major, K.331
Music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performed by Chet Swiatkowsky
See more »

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User Reviews

 
You'd better get into it.
24 March 2006 | by lee_eisenbergSee all my reviews

Jessica Lange gives the performance of a lifetime as iconoclastic actress Frances Farmer, whose rejection of the star system led to her mental collapse and ostracism from her fame-hungry mother Lillian (Kim Stanley). Lange's command of the role makes you feel like there's a knife in your stomach. It's that intense. As for the question of what's accurate and what's not, that's not really important. The point is that Lange gets into this role to the max. "Frances" isn't the sort of movie that you can just watch; you have to feel like it's happening to you, or you might not get the full experience. All in all, a great movie. Also starring Sam Shepard and Jeffrey DeMunn.


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