- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
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Dear Programers at TCM: Is it really interesting to the grand public to spent the night watching a series of otherwise unrelated movies just because Miklos Rosza composed the music? I can't believe too many Americans pine for this experience. And why do we have to have a movie about alcoholism on Saturday night in prime time. I rather go out and get plastered. I don't know what your viewer surveys indicate. But for me prime time is only time of the day I am going to watch a movie. Try to think of the prime time slot as the key one of the day, the time you're most likely to get a big audience, and try to run your best stuff in that slot. How often have I seen great movies by Ford, Capra, Hawks, Hitchcock, Welles, Astaire/Rogers being run at impossible times, while the key 8 or 10 PM slot is taken up with drivel. Don't get me wrong. I love TCM and your evident love for movies. Thanks for what you do. But I do wonder sometimes about the programming priorities. And on the rare occasions when a masterpiece like Swing Time, or The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence or Vertigo is run in prime time, I rejoice say "all is forgiven, TCM."
Ahead of Its Time - Not Shown Enough
- Gary W Neidhardt
To properly appreciate the movie, one should not use the standards of today to fully appreciate the pioneering message of this film. Not that many years before alcoholics stayed captives in places that Ray Milland escapes from in the film. Doctors, psychiatrists, sociologists, psychologists simply did not know how to treat alcoholics. Not that many years before this film alcoholics were being injected with magic secret potions, undergoing spinal taps, and swallowing a variety of bizarre chemicals from various crusading treatments meant to cure the alcoholic. Never was it considered that the solution to alcoholism, first and foremost, is a spiritual and not, in most cases, chemical. Alcoholics are not bad people trying to be good, they're sick people trying to get well. Too bad this message is so vastly ignored in our day and age when the odds are, the person reading this is on some mood altering chemical. Drugs and alcohol today are used to excess everywhere. This is a movie that should be shown often since good lives come not from substances that change how you feel, but through actions that change who you are.
All that is neccesary is----
- J. D. Jitters
Some think this is an easier way than using gun but it's not and all that is necessary is to watch an unhappy family member suffer and die this way. I have had several in my family who took this route. It's very, very sad to watch. I myself had a drinking problem but circumstances caused me to change, lets say God interfered and just at the right time. I am now eighty years of age and often think of what might have happened. God must love me very much to have caused me to change and I thank Him! Strange, but when I was hitting the bottle, I never liked being around drunks when sober.
The Lost Weekend
- Tanner Bartko
Classic film about unsuccessful writer who battles the bottle. Mature, emotionally super-charged character piece is as good as anything from the golden age of Hollywood. One of Wilder's best; Ray Milland won an Oscar for his brave, unforgettable performance in film that was years ahead of its time. Picture, director and script also won Academy Awards. Don't miss this.
Good But Not Great !
- DON RILEY
Ray Milland is good in this and he's a very good leading actor. But to my way of thinking this is not an Oscar worthy performance. I would have to say this is one of the lesser one's, of which there are several, in the category of "Lesser quality Oscar choices". The film is good but not great. I prefer DAYS OF WINE AND ROSES as a film and in its portrayal of alcoholism.. I just feel its a better film and the performances are much better. This is only "good" in my opinion. I don't find it to be anywhere near as realistic as most. I must say I do have a bias Ray Milland and Jane Wyman are far from my personal favorite actor or actress.
A Stark Portrayal of a Grinding Addiction
- Kirsten I.
If any film can persuade an alcoholic to quit drinking, Billy Wilder's THE LOST WEEKEND can. Ray Milland's performance as an alcoholic hitting bottom is so believable it's frightening. In all the years since this film was first released, it doesn't seem to have aged because it's so stark in its portrayal of a grinding addiction. Perhaps it can't reach a true alcoholic, who might say, "That's not me. I can control my drinking," because a movie isn't as scary as the prospect of giving up an addiction. But it can reach addicts who know they have a problem and want to solve it.
Superb! 5 Stars!
- el debbo
Excellent acting by Ray Milland and Jane Wyman, of course, and the supporting cast was stellar, too. Howard Da Silva as the barkeep who finally asks about the "lilacs in Ohio"; Frank Faylon playing the sage male nurse to a tee...whose candor actually is going to help the freshman drunk hit bottom. And Gloria, played by Doris Dowling, with her prophetic gun-finger aimed at his head. What a movie! I can't wait to share it with other classic lovers; the script, the story, the photography were tops. You can't beat Billy Wilder.
Everthing about this film is perfect. The writing, location and acting. One of the best films on alcoholism every made. Even though it was made in 1945 it is still true today in 2013.
The Lost Weekend
- Dashiell B.
The 'Best Picture' winner of '45 is loathed around the world by the Liquor Industry. The film has the audience follow in the events of an alcoholic's 48 hours of freedom. Milland won a well-deserved Oscar for his agonizing performance, great supporting work from Wyman & Da Silva. Wilder won Oscar's for directing & co-writing the screenplay with Brackett, adapting Charles R. Jackson's with maturity & intelligence to create this sometimes too-painful to watch film. A chilling drama well worth seeing. I give it a 5/5.
The Lost Weekend (1945)
- Mr. Blandings
Ray Milland is brilliant in his frank portrayal of an alcoholic who would lie, steal, anything for his next drink. Why any sane person would drink after seeing a film like this - of seeing what addiction does to you - well, that's just it, though, isn't it? Addiction robs a person of their sanity, drains their will-power, and eliminates their control over their own life. Society needs to look on the common, everyday, legal addictions like booze, cigarettes, caffeine, etc. with the same seriousness as any drug or artificial stimulant. This is a worthwhile film that was ahead of its time and so was quite deserving of its Best Picture Oscar. Mr. Milland deserves the real credit, though, for making the whole thing work; his reaction in the horrifying scene with the bat is nothing less than chilling. Jane Wyman is also very good as the long-suffering girlfriend who drags the person she loves back from the edge. The musical score is powerful and memorable, but might have been better without the theremin. But then, as this is the "spacey" instrument's first use in a motion picture, my annoyance with any perceieved cliche overuse (in 1950s sci-fi and horror flicks) is purely retroactive and so it would be unfair to hold that against it.
Ray needs the Rye
- Jeff Boston
Ray Milland was convincing as a writer who becomes a drinker for the same primary reason many, if not most, did before and have done so since. Such is what makes "The Lost Weekend" a timeless cautionary tale. The ending is too neat, and the acting (save Milland's magic) is atrocious for a film that won Best Picture, with as many performances fixed and unbending as the times Milland fixed himself a drink and went on a bender. Jane Wyman is as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside here, but her faithful girlfriend part leaves one wondering how she garnered 4 Oscar noms later in her career, winning once (just a few years after this 1945 film). Billy Wilder was one of the greats. As the insightful face of TCM, Robert Osborne, said last night (the first time I watched this film), Milland did not think he was up to the job, but Wilder's ways brought out the demons (but he couldn't do anything with Wyman?).
An Alcoholic's Dark Journey
- Bruce Reber
"The Lost Weekend" (1945) is a powerful, no punches pulled portrait of an alcoholic writer battling both the bottle and his own personal demons. Ray Milland gives the most impressive performance of his career as the film's subject, writer Don Birnam, who alienates everyone around him because the only thing he cares about is getting his next drink. Milland won the Oscar for Best Actor, and deservedly so. I don't think any other actor could have played the role the way he did. There are so many haunting scenes in "The Lost Weekend, but to me the one that best showed Birnam's desperation was him walking all over NYC trying to find an open pawn shop so that he could hock his typewriter for a bottle of booze. Probably the scariest two scenes were the guy in the alcoholic ward nick-named Beetle screaming(because he thought beetles were crawling all over him), and when Birnam imagines he sees the bat eating the mouse in a hole in the wall. At the end he pulls himself together and is finally able to write his book "The Bottle", because he can now write from the drunk's point of view instead of the writer's. Also one of director Billy Wilder's best efforts, "The Lost Weekend" is excellent on every level. Four Stars.
the lost weekend
the absolute peak of stardom in my estimation for ray milland. billy wilder, 'nuff said. every addict should see this film; i did. as a native new yorker this film could not have cast "The City" in a more depraved, cinema noir and glorious light. the "El", 3rd Ave., Belleview Psychiatric and "the heat". Along with Days of Wine and Roses,Panic in Needle Park and The Man with the Golden Arm.....truly great hardcore addiction films!
RAY MILLAND WON AN OSCAR FOR BEST ACTOR IN HIS RIVETING PERFORMANCE AS AN ALCOHLIC WRITER ON THE EDGE IN LOST WEEKEND. A TABOO SUBJECT BROUGHT TO LIFE IN THIS 1945 FILM CLASSIC. IT IS RELAVANT TODAY, AND REALLY SHOULD BE SHOWN MORE OFTEN AS A RESULT.