BetteBack February 8, 1990: ‘Stella’ Review – Midler Gives A Performance That Rivals Those Of ‘The Rose’ And ‘Beaches’

Anderson Herald Bulletin
February 8, 1990


It’s 1989. Life isn’t the greatest for Stella, but It lsnt too bad She has a job and a place of her own, and she is happy most of the time. Bartending may not be the most glamorous of jobs, but it pays the bills.

Then one day she finds herself pregnant by a medical student who has been frequenting the bar. They love each other, but oil and water just dont mix Stella raises the child herself. She gives the child love, but can she give her happiness, success…?

This Is the age old dilemma of parents who will always struggle to give their children the best The parents who may doubt their own abilities, who may feel that they have failed, and yet they continue to sacrifice their own happiness for that of their children. It is In that sacrificial giving that they find their true reward.

The script for this film Is frequently very weak. Bette Midler does an excellent job of covering many of these weaknesses, but there’s only so much that she can do. She has managed to give us a performance that rivals those in “THE ROSE” and “BEACHES.”

Trinl Alvarado, who plays her daughter Jenny for the majority of the film, does an excellent job too. She works well with Midler And serves as a counterpoint to Midler’s struggles as a mother toy showing us a few of the struggles of a daughter.

The focus, however, remains on Stella. It is her story. It is her struggle. She has tried to live her life the best way she knows how.

She has tried to show her daughter love. And in her struggle to give her daughter happiness and to help her achieve success, she shows us just how much can be accomplished when you give your love so completely to another.

PG-13 for language. (Dont forget your kleenex!)

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