BootLeg Betty

BetteBack Review Saturday, February 10,1990: Stella

The Salina Journal
Stella
Saturday, February 10,1990

It’s a good thing the irreplaceable Barbara Stanwyck is already dead, says Cox News Service film critic Eleanor Ringel, because if she had seen this remake of her 1937 tearjerker classic, “Stella Dallas,” it probably would have killed her.

The plot is roughly the’same: Stella (Bette Midler), a brassy bartender, gets pregnant by a well-off med student (Stephen Collins). Refusing his marriage proposal and his money, she valiantly raises her daughter (Trini Alvarado) on her own. Then, in a fit of maternal martyrdom, she hands her over to a better life with Dad and his new wife (Marsha
Mason).

Watching someone as gifted as Midler give herself over to something this gruesomely wrongheaded is an embarrassing experience, Ringel says.

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