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MAKE WAY FOR TOMORROW

Director: LEO McCAREY

92 minutes| U.S.A.| 1937| Black and White| Digital Video


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Accepting the Best Director Oscar for The Awful Truth (1937), director Leo McCarey thanked the Academy, then added: ‘You gave it to me for the wrong picture’. Such was his justified faith in his other film of that year, Make Way for Tomorrow, one of the finest and most genuinely affecting films of Hollywood’s Golden Age.

When their home is repossessed, elderly couple Bark and Lucy Cooper (Victor Moore and Beulah Bondi) are forced to move in with their children, living some distance apart. As friction in the households turns to resentment, the couple are reunited for one brief afternoon before being separated permanently after 50 years of marriage. The film turns its honest and unflinching gaze on family dynamics and the difficulties of aging, never assigning blame, never playing for sympathy but simply recording the situation as it unfolds. It is this honesty which avoids mawkishness and makes the couple’s final farewell so truly heartbreaking. (Notes by Kevin Coyne).

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