Sweet Bird of Youth

Synopsis: Drifter Chance Wayne returns to his hometown after many years of trying to make it in the movies. Arriving with him is a faded film star he picked up along the way, Alexandra Del Lago. While trying to get her help to make a screen test, he also finds the time to meet his former girlfriend Heavenly, the daughter of the local politician Tom 'Boss' Finley, who more or less forced him to leave the town many years ago.
Genre: Drama
Director(s): Richard Brooks
Production: MGM Home Entertainment
  Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 7 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
120 min


Hey, you, whoever you are.

- Are you awake now, princess?

- I want a drink.

- Oh, soon, princess.

- I want it now.

Oh, please...

...please get me a drink.

For God's sake, baby,

don't hold out on me.

It's coming up, princess.


Those two flags just

ought about do it, boys.

Well, don't tell me that man with the

middle-age spread is Dan Hatcher.

Chance. Chance Wayne.

I never expected to see you again.

Not in these hereabouts.

Just because a man's

successful is no reason...

...to forget his old hometown.

- Anything I can do for you, Mr. Wayne?

Yeah, I want a suite.

Facing outside to the gulf.

Bedroom, living room, the best.

And also service that car out there.

The Cadillac convertible out front.

"Princess Kosmos."

"Princess Kos" what?


The Princess Kosmonopolis.

Hollywood, California?

She is traveling incognito.

Can I let you in on a little secret?

She is also Alexandra Del Lago,

the movie star.

She's not feeling very well. Car sickness.

I'll take her up by the veranda.


...get me Dr. Scudder

at the Finley Hospital.


Oh, it's Chance Wayne, all right, sir.

Big as life.

No, doc, he's not exactly alone.

Princess Kosmo

or something or another.

He said she's a moving-picture star.

Will you be right over? How soon?

Honey, try to get me Boss Finley

on the phone, will you, please?

Did you ever hear of

Princess Kosta-whatsit or...?


- What are you doing?

- Don't you want these unpacked, sir?

The princess is finicky

about her things.

I'll take care of that later.

Yes, sir.

And about that bottle...

I didn't see any bottle, Mr. Wayne.

- How'd you know my name?

- I used to wait tables...

...at the club when you'd come

dancing with the same young lady.

That pretty young lady.

Boss Finley's daughter.


- What are you called?

- Fly.

Just like the fly, sir.


And when you haul up the rest,

would you...

...bring up a bottle of vodka

and some ice?

Yes, sir.

And write yourself

a $5 tip on the check.

Yes, sir.

Now, shoo, Fly.

It's okay, princess. It's okay.

Good evening, doctor.

- Who's that?

- George Scudder.

Hello, doc.

How'd you know I was back?

Bad news travels fast.

It's very nice of you to make my

homecoming so warm and so friendly.

Your lady friend sounds like

she's coming out of ether.

The princess had a rough night.


- You hooked a princess? Gee!

- She's not using her real name...

Golly, I should think not,

checking into hotels with you.

George. You are the only

grown man I know...

...that still says "gee"

and "golly" and "gosh."

Well, I'm not as sophisticated as you.

Get me the Thomas J. Finley Hospital,


- How's Heavenly?

- Don't tell me she's why you came back.

Hello, this is Dr. Scudder. Any calls?

Well, you tell her the

cesarean scar won't be visible...

...to anyone except her husband.

At least, I hope not.

All right. I'll take care of that.

I'll be there in 20 minutes. Right.

You sure got the

bedside manner, George.

Well, I don't get much practice

since I was made chief of staff.

Oh, man. You've got it made.

Why did you come back here?

Well, I still got a mother

and a girl here, that's why.

Mother's been waiting

for the surprise that I got.

But you asked "How's Heavenly,"

not "How's my mother."

I'll take that. The luggage

in the bedroom, please.

Yes, sir.

Does a...

...chief of staff take a snort, George?


Your mother died a few weeks ago.

This is the death certificate.

Why wasn't I notified?

Well, you were.

A few days before she died,

I sent you a telegram.

The last address she had for you.

General delivery, Hollywood.

I got no telegram.

After she died, I sent you a letter.

And we never heard from you.

The church took up a nice collection...

...and she was nicely buried

in the family plot.

Don't you even care

that your mother died?

What is that you just took?

A pill.

What kind of pill?

Oh, benny. Benzedrine.

On prescription?

Yeah. Sort of.

A goofball makes the world

keep its balance.

- I don't understand you. I just don't...

- I don't expect you to, George.

I mean your coming back here,

after what I wrote.

- You'll be late, chief.

- I wrote you not to come back here ever.

I wrote how Finley

and Tom Jr. Feel...

...about your recent behavior

toward a certain young lady.

- And I also wrote you how that...

- Look, I told you.

Now, I got no letter, I got no telegram.

You got something to tell me, tell me.

I got no letter about

any certain young...

Something happen to Heavenly, George?

Is that it?

Something about Heavenly?

What else did you write in that letter?

Well, I see we can't possibly

discuss this in a civilized manner.

All right.

George, if something happened

to Heavenly, tell me, please.

- Give me that bag.

- First tell me.

First the bag.

Now, I'm gonna give you

the best advice you ever had.

Take that advice. Get out of town.

You know what the name

Boss Finley means...

...so don't try to see

Heavenly or talk to her or anything.


...I'll tell the clerk you're checking out.

Go wake Sleeping Beauty

out of her drunken jag and get moving.

And keep moving till

you're across the state line.

I ain't moving nowhere

till I see my girl.

You don't have a girl in St. Cloud.

That's what else I wrote. Heavenly

and I are getting married next month.

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Tennessee Williams

Thomas Lanier "Tennessee" Williams III (March 26, 1911 – February 25, 1983) was an American playwright. Along with Eugene O'Neill and Arthur Miller, he is considered among the three foremost playwrights of 20th-century American drama.After years of obscurity, at age 33 he became suddenly famous with the success of The Glass Menagerie (1944) in New York City. This play closely reflected his own unhappy family background. It was the first of a string of successes, including A Streetcar Named Desire (1947), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1955), and Sweet Bird of Youth (1959). With his later work, he attempted a new style that did not appeal to audiences. Increasing alcohol and drug dependence inhibited his creative expression. His drama A Streetcar Named Desire is often numbered on short lists of the finest American plays of the 20th century alongside Eugene O'Neill's Long Day's Journey into Night and Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman.Much of Williams' most acclaimed work has been adapted for the cinema. He also wrote short stories, poetry, essays and a volume of memoirs. In 1979, four years before his death, Williams was inducted into the American Theater Hall of Fame. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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