Sunday, September 9, 2012

Baby Doll

Turner Classic Movies ran Baby Doll last week.  It stars a very young Carroll Baker, Eli Wallach and Karl Malden.  This is a famous flick, probably condemned by the Catholic Church and would probably have been given an X rating had there been those kind of ratings back when it was made, somewhere in the mid-50s.

Essential plot was that this old guy marries a young girl and promises not to have carnal knowledge of her until she turns 20.  I only saw the very end, maybe the last seven minutes, but from the wild look on Karl Malden's face, I guess he was her husband and perhaps had killed somebody or attempted to kill somebody the night before his wife's 20th.

Eli Wallach, looking as evil as only he can look, with dark hair and mustache, seems to have run afoul of both Baby Doll and her husband.  He finds her with a scraped leg on the side of a road or field as she has been running away from her husband who is now in the cop car.  He runs away from the authorities at the front of the house and Karl Malden, saying he will come back for her.

So, knowing no more than the above about this movie, I can see that there's plenty to upset a mid-50s viewer or titillate that same viewer.  You see Karl Malden being carted away by the authorities and just as he leaves the front of the house, you hear a big old clock inside chime midnight.  His wife is now 20 and he can't have his husbandly way with her because he is going to jail for sure.

Here's what I took away from the movie, though.  The very last line. 
Baby Doll goes up on the porch of her large house and there's an elderly woman sitting there with a suitcase at her feet.  She beckons the old woman inside.  The woman asks,  "What are we going to do?"
Baby Doll flutters her eyelashes and says,  "We got nothin' to do but wait for tomorrow and see if we're remembered or forgotten."

I will have more to say about this.  Much more.

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