Return to Peyton Place

Overview

If anything, this star-studded sequel is even sillier than the original, adding to its problems by completely recasting all the roles, combining several of them into existing characters. Carol Lynley is the heroine this time, and she leaves Peyton Place for New York to write a book about the hypocrisy of her hometown. The book causes lots of trouble back home, getting Mike Robert Sterling fired as principal, angering Lynley's mother Eleanor Parker, and stirring such horrible memories in Selena Tuesday Weld that ...
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Overview

If anything, this star-studded sequel is even sillier than the original, adding to its problems by completely recasting all the roles, combining several of them into existing characters. Carol Lynley is the heroine this time, and she leaves Peyton Place for New York to write a book about the hypocrisy of her hometown. The book causes lots of trouble back home, getting Mike Robert Sterling fired as principal, angering Lynley's mother Eleanor Parker, and stirring such horrible memories in Selena Tuesday Weld that she brains her new boyfriend with a fireplace poker, thinking he is her dead rapist stepfather. The film really belongs to Mary Astor, in a hilarious turn as a smotheringly possessive mother. She tries to come between her son and his new bride Luciana Paluzzi in some unintentionally hilarious scenes, causing Paluzzi to fling herself down a ski slope in an attempt at a self-induced miscarriage. Overwrought and overblown, the film is still a treat for fans of campy "suburban sin" melodramas. Look for Bob Crane as an unctuous talk show sidekick.
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Special Features

Closed Caption; Commentary by author and historian Sylvia Stoddard; Movietone news footage ("Publisher Honors Author and Star" and "Return to Peyton Place: A Smash Hit"); Restoration comparison; Theatrical trailer; Widescreen format (aspect ratio: 2.35:1); Audio: English Stereo, English Mono, Spanish Mono; Subtitles: English, Spanish
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Bruce Eder
The time was when 20th Century Fox, more than any other studio, had a knack for generating sequels and follow-up movies that were not only better movies, but also, occasionally, more interesting movies than their predecessors -- Fritz Lang's The Return of Frank James comes to mind, as a sequel to Henry King's Jesse James, as does Alfred Werker's The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes as a follow-up to Sidney Lanfield's The Hound of the Baskervilles. Alas, Return to Peyton Place doesn't fit into that group or category; indeed, watching it is more like watching Beneath the Planet of the Apes (ironically, a product of the same studio) -- you're there because of the earlier movie, and wondering what went wrong. Both movies represented significant come-downs from their predecessors, and seemed to take wrong turns in the basic thinking behind their respective scripts, tampering with essential characters, and compressing or deleting elements that made the earlier films work. The cast here is not bad -- Mary Astor had been a fine actress for decades, and Jeff Chandler, Robert Sterling, and Eleanor Parker were good players, even if Carol Lynley and Tuesday Weld were a bit lightweight in their respective roles. The script, however, is a train wreck compared with the original film's screenplay, which, for all of its soap opera elements, at least had a little depth and complexity. The pieces just don't fit together properly as drama, the holes are obvious, and not even beautiful cinematography by Charles G. Clarke, a lush -- overripe -- score by Franz Waxman (complete with Rosemary Clooney singing the title song), or the presence of José Ferrer as director, doing the best that he could on individual scenes, can help the movie. It's obvious that he responded best to the portions of the script dealing with censorship and suppression, but there's a lot here that feels like it was phoned in, in the writing and the acting. And a lot of it feels like pieces of other, better scripts spliced together, along with some ludicrous moments as well; if Mary Astor's first scene plays well, the scenes between Jeff Chandler and Carol Lynley seem like bad college theater. Indeed, Ferrer's presence in the director's chair only adds to the sense of confusion one gets watching the movie. On the plus side, one does get a last glimpse of one-time movie and vaudeville funny man Emerson Treacy (as Bud Humphries) and Astor in a very late-career starring role, and the film certainly looks very good.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/22/2005
  • UPC: 024543162704
  • Original Release: 1961
  • Rating:

  • Source: 20th Century Fox
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Wide Screen / Subtitled / Dubbed
  • Time: 2:02:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 4,770

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Carol Lynley Allison MacKenzie
Jeff Chandler Lewis Jackman
Eleanor Parker Connie Rossi
Mary Astor Roberta Carter
Tuesday Weld Selena Cross
Robert Sterling Mike Rossi
Luciana Paluzzi Raffaella Carter
Gunnar Hellstrom Nils
Brett Halsey Ted Carter
Kenneth MacDonald Dexter
Bob Crane Peter White
Bill Bradley Mark Steele
Tim Durant John Smith
Casey Adams Nick Parker
Pitt Herbert Mr. Wadley
Warren Parker Lupus Wolf
Arthur Peterson Selectman
Jennifer Howard Mrs. Jackman
Joan Banks Mrs. Humphries
Emerson Treacy Bud Humphries
Wilton Graff Dr. Fowlkes
Hari (Harry) Rhodes Arthur
Leonard Stone Steve Swanson
Reedy Talton Frank O'Roark
Jack Carr Postman
Tony Miller Photographer
Max Mellinger Nevins
Collette Lyons Mrs. Bingham
Carol Veazie Interviewers
Helen Bennett Interviewer
Charles Seel Counterman
Technical Credits
José Ferrer Director
Ronald Alexander Screenwriter
David Bretherton Editor
Charles G. Clarke Cinematographer
Rosemary Clooney Songwriter
Warren B. Delaplain Sound/Sound Designer
Donfeld Costumes/Costume Designer
Bernard Freericks Sound/Sound Designer
David Hall Asst. Director
Curtis Harrington Associate Producer
Fred MacLean Set Decoration/Design
Ben Nye Sr. Makeup
Hans Peters Art Director
Leonid Raab Musical Direction/Supervision
Walter Scott Set Decoration/Design
Jack Martin Smith Art Director
Jerry Wald Producer
Franz Waxman Score Composer
Paul Webster Songwriter
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Main Titles
2. Long Distance Call
3. Allison, the Author
4. Mrs. Carter
5. Creating Discord
6. Selena's Accident
7. Off to New York!
8. A Whole Lot of Words
9. Molding a Writer
10. Connie's Fears
11. Hostile Relations
12. Thanksgiving Day
13. At the Ski Lodge
14. Book Tour
15. Town Reaction
16. Flashback
17. School Board
18. Harsh Words
19. Ending It All
20. Old Enough
21. Town Hall Meeting
22. Selena Speaks Out
23. Changing Values
24. Season of Love/End Titles
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Play
   Language Selection
      Languages: English Stereo
      Languages: Spanish Mono
      Subtitles: English
      Subtitles: Spanish
      Subtitles: None
      Commentary by Author and Historian Sylvia Stoddard
   Scene Selection
   Special Features
      Movietone News: Publisher Honors Author and Star
      Movietone News: "Return to Peyton Place" a Smash Hit
      Commentary by Author and Historian Sylvia Stoddard: On
      Commentary by Author and Historian Sylvia Stoddard: Off
      Theatrical Trailer
      Restoration Comparison
      Studio Classics: All About Eve
      Studio Classics: The Diary of Anne Frank
      Studio Classics: A Letter to Three Wives
      Studio Classics: Peyton Place
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