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December 06, 2008

Beverly Garland: 1926 - 2008

beverly garland.jpg

One of the high points of a free trip to Los Angeles to demonstrate my knowledge of film as staying at Beverly Garland's Holiday Inn. On the television was a documentary, constantly shown, that should have convinced anyone that Ms. Garland was the hardest working woman in show business. There were also the souvenirs available, notably an image of Garland with the monster from It Conquered the World. The place would have been even more perfect if movies with Beverly Garland were shown constantly, like at the Heartbreak Hotel in Graceland with the continual Elvis retrospective. Those of us from the Denver area who participated in that first season of "The Ultimate Film Fanatic" on the Independent Movie Channel dubbed ourselves "The Beverly Garland Film Society".

Conspicuous among the many television appearances and supporting roles in forgotten or forgettable movies is Garland's performance as Tuesday Weld's mother in Pretty Poison. Maybe had the film been more successful at the box office, Garland would have been nominated as Best Supporting Actress for 1968. Instead, the film stands out as an anomaly for an actress whose sense of professionalism seems to have been to take anything and everything that was offered, small parts in some big films, and larger parts in small films. One may argue about the quality of The Alligator People or Swamp Women, but not with the woman who stated, "We didn't do it tongue-in-cheek. We really meant it. We gave our all. We were serious, good actors and we played it seriously."

Posted by Peter Nellhaus at December 6, 2008 11:50 PM


A beautiful woman.

Posted by: ARBOGAST at December 8, 2008 02:26 PM