Picks and Pans Review: All About All About Eve
by Sam Staggs
You've never seen All About Eve? Put down this magazine, rent the video, and treat yourself to the movie many consider to have been the best showbiz flick ever made. On its 50th anniversary, Joseph L. Mankiewicz's Oscar winner about backstage skulduggery still stands as cultural shorthand for betraval as well as the epitome of sophisticated filmmaking.
Staggs's gossipy goulash celebrates all of Eve's incarnations, from the original tale told by Austrian actress Elisabeth Bergner over a dinner in 1944 to the 1970 Broadway musical Applause. Nice tidbits: Offscreen, Celeste Holm wouldn't speak to Bette Davis, and George Sanders threw wife Zsa Zsa Gabor into a swimming pool to cool her jealousy over Marilyn Monroe. Despite some turgid and some trivial passages, Staggs provides thoughtful film analysis and a thrilling final coup: an interview with the real Eve—Bergner's nemesis—still alive after all these years. (St. Martin's, $24.95)
Bottom Line: Irresistible temptation
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