What I knew going in: I knew of the feud between Bette Davis and Joan Crawford. Also stupid trivia fact: This was the movie playing at the theater in the House of Wax remake.
Baby Jane Hudson (Bette Davis) was once a child star. At some point, her sister Blanche (Joan Crawford) became a better actress and took all the limelight. Not wanting to be a brat like Jane, Blanche wrote it in her contract that Jane must get a movie every time she does. Years later, Blanche is confined to a wheelchair and relies on her sister, now a serious drunk for help.
I wanted to see this one before Feud started airing on FX.(I watched this in February) I'm so glad I rushed because it was amazing. Davis is absolutely marvelous as the washed up Jane. Crawford's Blanche gets to be very kind and pleasant, so it's Davis that gets to have all the fun.
The way the film is shot is very dated. It tries hard to avoid any type of gore that could stem from the story, but the atmosphere is perfect. The ending came as a shock to me, and I found it morbidly fascinating in the same way I enjoyed Sunset Boulevard. If the film has one fault, it's a subplot surrounding a piano player (Victor Buono) who comes in to help Jane with her come back. The story itself makes sense, but Buono is so terrible that I'm shocked he was given an Oscar nomination for this. Luckily, it's such a small part it's easy to ignore his acting and focus on the real stars of the show.
Memorable Quote: "Oh Blanche, you know we have rats in the cellar?" - Baby Jane Hudson (Bette Davis)