Poor Jim


I felt bad for him when his estranged wife and MIL treated him so coldly. Especially when the grandma took his son out of his arms.

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Me too, especially considering how much money he sent her over the years. An ungrateful MIL, for sure.

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ilahilda says > I felt bad for him when his estranged wife and MIL treated him so coldly.
I can see why you might say that but I think you're only considering Buck's side and not looking at the whole picture.

the mother-in-law: It's true she never liked Buck but it's because she knew he was trouble. She warned her daughter, life with a gambler is disastrous. What parent would want that for their child? It turns out the MIL was right; he was not the right guy for Marge.

the wife: From the beginning, Marge gave Buck one chance after another and she kept believing in him long after he betrayed her trust. He proudly told everyone he was happy. She set up a nice home and was a good wife. She did all she could to make it work but he failed to uphold his end of the bargain. He was gambling in secret and risking their future.

Madge was unhappy. Besides gambling, Buck was staying out late and associating with the wrong people. He even had the nerve to let his former lover come to their house and wanted Madge to go out on the town with her and her kind. That's not only very disrespectful, it's also in poor taste.

Once she learned she was going to have a baby, she had to think of their child; not just herself. To put it in gambling terms, the odds on Buck changed so she had to leave. Even then, she didn't close the door. It took him a couple of years but when he showed up penniless, she took him in. She had started to move on with her life but decided to honor her word and stuck with him again.

I'm not sure what you expected of her but it seems to me she bent over backwards to make things work. In the end she had to let him go. He still never saw the error of his ways or saw how unhappy she was in the relationship.

Especially when the grandma took his son out of his arms.
The MIL was right to take the baby away from him. He was about to feed a little one year old baby with no teeth bacon and eggs. His poor judgment was a part of everything he did. Besides, he knew he was going to be a father yet he made no attempt to see his child, help support him, or keep in contact with his wife. If there had been a problem they couldn't even have notified him. He didn't care.


Woman, man! That's the way it should be Tarzan. [Tarzan and his mate]

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Yes - life with a gambler is usually bad news, but never once during the movie during the time they were together, not seem to put food on the table. They didn't live in a big place so - What did she do all day? Plus she had no problem always crying for money for her family. He had pressure to make more money.

Then - the scene with the baby - this is a dad who sees the kid for the first time as the kid is 1.. He wouldn't have a clue how to act around a baby especially in those days.

I think she was the real villain of this whole movie

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seahawk3133 says > I think she was the real villain of this whole movie
I suppose it depends on who you identify with. Apparently, you and others here, identified with Buck. I didn't. I could see his wife's side much more than I could his. I've known people like Buck who seem to have tunnel vision. They have such a great need to be big shots and to have a lot of money they think that's all that matters.

never once during the movie during the time they were together, not seem to put food on the table
Like most gamblers there are always peaks and valleys. His wife was running the household so they were able to keep things together for a time. As I recall they had a little money saved which he took. When she left him he was on a peak but they had been struggling. She took the money but she did it knowing as quickly as he got it, that money would soon be gone.

As I said before she had to think of her child and herself. She was also thinking of Buck. He had made certain promises but had broken them and was headed in the wrong direction. Staying with him at that point would be enabling him which would not be productive.
What did she do all day? Plus she had no problem always crying for money for her family. He had pressure to make more money.
She took care of her family and their home; that was her role, or job. Since his role was bringing in the money, it makes sense that she would let him know if they were short on funds. Daily living expenses are one thing but responsible people also plan for the future and for the unexpected, out of the ordinary things that inevitably occur.

the scene with the baby - this is a dad who sees the kid for the first time as the kid is 1.. He wouldn't have a clue how to act around a baby especially in those days.
All the more reason the baby should have been taken from him. Also, the reason he was unfamiliar with children was because he had chosen to stay away from his own child. You may see it as punishment or an attempt to keep his child from him but that's not the way to look at it. Keeping the child from him was for the child's safety. If he stuck around and learned how to care for a child, he would earn the right to be around him. That would apply to anyone, not just an absent father.

That said, I personally would never advocate leaving a child alone in the care of a person with addiction issues like gambling, drugs, sex, etc. Some have been known to use the child in inappropriate ways to feed their habit; as collateral, as a pawn, to get money, drugs, etc.


Woman, man! That's the way it should be Tarzan. [Tarzan and his mate]

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