MovieChat Forums > Imitation of LifeĀ (1959) Discussion > I can see why Sarah Jane was so rude,her...

I can see why Sarah Jane was so rude,her mother wouldn't back off.


It's not about race. When she showed up at the nightclub. I cringed when her mother just would not accept a "no" for an answer. Sarah Jane may have been morally wrong, but one needs to know when to just stop bugging someone, whether it's your daughter or not

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I reluctantly agree.

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The statement above is true.

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The more she pushed, the more Sarah Jane was going to alienate herself. Parents need to know when to let go; they cannot talk people(adult children) into things

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That type of parenting was probably typical for the times - however, out of my four sons, one is the type that you just have to bite your tongue with. But, yeah - as a parent and a child - I can see both sides. My mom would say things that triggered some of those feelings in me - even to almost the last weeks of her life. She passed last year at 100 years old. In her case, she was a parent and I was her baby to the very end! As a parent, I totally understand and respect that.

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wow..100 yrs old. Was she mostly coherent with her senses? The odds of living that long are small.

With Sarah Jane, it's not that she was doing anything wrong. It would be different if Annie was trying to talk her out committing grand larceny or drug use.

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Yes, mom was still coherent although she was in a wheel chair the last 3 years and in a nursing home. We were able to get her birthday announced on the Today Show by Willard Scott (she passed a month an a day after her birthday). It was thrilling for her! It was so cute - she actually thought Smuckers made jars of strawberry jam with her picture on it. She would tell all the workers at the facility that she had her picture on a jar of jelly! I told my oldest when he came to see her to be prepared because I was sure she would ask him about it. That was about the first thing she said to him - "did you get you some of that jelly with my picture on it?" and my son said "yes, Grandma - I did!". So sweet!!

I kind of have a problem with the whole "passing as white" concept. I know she wanted to be treated like she was white, but the underlying meaning of that is really - "treat me the same as the white girl". But yeah, it wasn't like she was doing anything criminal. Maybe a little risque, working in a nightclub.

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Yeah, but Sarah was like that at a very young age without taking anything to consideration. She never changed her tune as she got older.

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she wasn't harming anybody due to lack of consideration as an adult. Her mother just didn't like her occupation. She said every time her mother would come, she'd just move on to the next strip joint. People have to learn for themselves; her mother tried the best she could

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If I tell you no once...that should be the end of it. Same if I say stop. Once is enough. Evidently Annie just didn't get it.

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Yes, Mama was way too pushy.

But no one was willing to even hint back then that Mama was a nosy cow and needed to mind her own beeswax, 'cause Mama-just-wants-the-best-for-you.

Her sainthood was assumed. No matter what she actually did.

--
LBJ's mistress on JFK:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WcXeutDmuRA


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Is our own mother any different? Mine will always get the wauuugh! and comfort from her siblings (you know, they are on her level) even if she's the faulty one

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Sarah Jane wasn't doing anything morally wrong. She was half white, and looked completely white, and chose to live as a white person, yet her mother and everyone else was continuously pressuring her into being black. She had to get away from them to get them to leave her alone to live her life the way she wanted to, and had every moral right to. She had a steady job singing and dancing in a nightclub. So what?

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I agree with your comment. But Sara Jane was almost cruel to her mother, and that was not needed. Annie was my favorite character in the whole movie, she played the part so well. So I guess I am not objective...still though, she didnt deserve that treatment.

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You're right, she was cruel to her mother. However, I think that was owing to her lack of maturity and the emotional pressure that was being put upon her, rather than any innate cruelty in her character. If her mother had lived, I believe they would eventually have reconciled and had a warm relationship.

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I've just read the original novel by Fannie Hurst, and the daughter's decision has a devastating effect on her mother; however, her behavior is motivated by desperation under the social circumstances of the time (early 1930s), not by cruelty.

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It was always about race. The daughter didn't want her mother at the school because nobody knew she was black and she became humiliated when everyone found out. She never went to her mother's church because it was a black church. The only way for a black person to pass is to deny one's own relatives. She didn't even need to pass for financial reason because her mother became rich.

Another movie with a similar theme is called "Pinky".

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