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The Subject Was Roses ()

directed by
featuring Patricia Neal, Jack Albertson, Martin Sheen, Don Saxon, Elaine Williams

Frank D. Gilroy's Pulitzer-winning "kitchen sink" theatrical piece The Subject Was Roses was given a no-frills film transference in 1968. Martin Sheen and Jack Albertson re-create their stage roles as a returning serviceman and his alcoholic father. Patricia Neal takes over from the play's Irene Dailey as Nettie Cleary, Timmy's (Sheen) overly protective mother, long at odds with husband John (Albertson) over his drinking. Mother and Father try to put on a facade of happiness for the benefit of their son, but soon the three of them are squabbling again, just as if the boy had never been away. With the exception of adding a few extraneous characters, the film version of The Subject Was Roses is essentially the same as its 1964 Broadway counterpart. The film helped establish the career of Martin Sheen, launched a whole new dramatic career for Jack Albertson, and represented a triumphant comeback for Patricia Neal, who'd recently recovered from a debilitating stroke. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi Hide synopsis

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