Joan and Christina Crawford: Mommie or Daughter Dearest?
January 23, 2009 11:19am CST
I know many people may have either read the book or watched the movie "Mommie Dearest" based on the childhood and life of Christina Crawford, and her relationship with (adopted) mother, famous grande dame of Hollywood, Joan Crawford. I both read the book and watched the movie, and then read an article last year in Vanity Fair ( http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/features/2008/03/crawford200803?currentPage=1 ) pleading Joan's side of the story, and it made me wonder who was being more honest? As the daughter of a domineering and unpredictable mother, I can see Christina's side of the story. I, too, was woken violently in the middle of the night because I had failed to do something to my mother's satisfaction. I know many of the people quoted in the Vanity Fair article express disbelief that anyone (much less the renowned Ms. Crawford) could behave in such a way. I know this not to be true, having experienced it myself. Many other people state that Christina is an ungrateful daughter, and go so far as to call her a 'viper' for turning on her mother in her later years. In regards to what I found for proof backing up Christina's story, it seems she would have a lot to be angry for. After all, her mother did steal her break-out role in a TV series, cut her out of the will, and spend almost a lifetime as a closet alcoholic, subjecting her eldest daughter to running large portions of the household. I'd probably be bitter, too. So what's your take? Was Joan really the bad mother her daughter Christina made her out to be, or was Christina just an ungrateful child who was looking to cash in on her mother's fame after being left no inheritance?