I was just watching Turner Classic Movies (thank God great stations like TCM still exist) and was blessed to see one of my all-time favorite movies, “The Trip To Bountiful” starring the incomparable Geraldine Page.
I remember when this movie first hit the theaters in 1985. I was so taken by the great acting, direction, and amazing storyline. In fact, this was one of the films that fueled my fire as an actor.
No one cheered louder than myself when Geraldine Page won the Oscar for her performance, but honestly, the entire cast is exceptional. John Heard as her son Ludie has never been better (and I’ve loved all of his performances over the years) and Rebecca De Mornay as the sweet traveling companion proved why she should be taken seriously as an actor. However, the real scene-stealer in this picture is Carlin Glynn as Jessie Mae. Her performance is nothing short of brilliant and causes one to wonder why she didn’t make more films (you probably know her best as Molly Ringwald’s mother in “Sixteen Candles.”)
Here are some tidbits that only film connoisseurs like myself would know:
- Geraldine Page was married to Rip Torn when shooting this movie. The doorbell to their New York City brownstone read “Torn Page.”
- Her twin sons in real like with Torn have a small role in the movie; they are standing in line behind their mother at the bus station waiting to purchase a ticket.
- Peter Masterson directed this movie and he just happened to be married to Carlin Glynn…and they are the parents of Mary Stuart Masterson, who stars in one of my favorite films from my youth, “Heaven Help Us.”
Sadly, Geraldine Page died just two years after winning her Oscar from a heart attack, making this performance even more timely.
I was fortunate enough to see one of my heroes, Cicely Tyson, star in the Broadway production of “The Trip To Bountiful” and subsequently win her first Tony Award. For those of us who loved the film version, it was like coming full circle.
Do you love great acting? Do you love authentic performances that tell simple yet provocative stories? Then you’ll love “The Trip To Bountiful.” Great cinema never gets old – thank the Lord.