Friday Flashback #209

“Loving” is a 1970 movie starring George Segal, Eva Marie Saint and Keenan Wynn.

If you’ve never heard of it — and I sure haven’t — here’s a review from IMDB:

George Segal (not as scruffy as he typically had been at the start of the decade) plays a troubled husband and father suffering through career uncertainty who cheats on his wife (Eva Marie Saint, cast yet again as a doormat-spouse). Segal is an affable screen presence, but we never learn much about what makes him tick, what causes him to hurt the ones he loves.

Talented director Irvin Kershner hit a few snags in his career; here, the semi-improvisational ground he’s treading desperately needs a center, or a leading character we can attach some emotions to. The dramatic finale is well-realized, and Segal’s comeuppance is provocative and thoughtful–at least something is HAPPENING; overall, it’s a cynical slice of the marriage blahs, one that probably played a lot fresher in 1970 than it does today.

Somehow, Andy Laskin found it on TCM. (Turner’s definition of “classic movies” is quite broad.)

Suddenly, he spotted a familiar locale:

“Loving” was not nearly as successful as other movies filmed in Westport, like “The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit” or “The Stepford Wives.”

Nor is it as well remembered as (my favorite) “Manny’s Orphans.”

But it reminds us of a time when nearly every Westporter commuted to New York.

And of a train station that — except for that long-gone wooden building — still looks almost the same as it did, 50 years ago.

9 responses to “Friday Flashback #209

  1. Sounds like a great film– I’ll add it to my list. Great read!

  2. The train station is quite different. There are now high level platforms with new modern flat canopies replacing the old wooden A-frame canopies–I personally find the new canopies incongruent with the station’s antiquity. The high level platforms also render those baggage carts obsolete, though no train servicing Westport even has baggage service anymore.

  3. The raised platforms went in around the mid-seventies to accommodate the “new” M2 cars. The old cars pulled by a diesel engine had steps for getting down to the platforms (like shown in the picture). Grand Central’s platforms were at the same height as the cars floors and now a consistent at all stations. Also in the picture was an freight station house, that side tracks from the main line going up next to it. It is now parking about about where the elevators and stairs on the west end are located.

  4. Thank god that rickety old train and it’s exorbitantly priced tickets is proving no longer necessary for our livelihoods. God Bless the New Normal. It may very well extend Westporters’ lifespans by 20 or 30 years (maybe even help to overcome alcoholism!).

  5. Jennifer Shaner Bangser

    A scene was also filmed at Greens Farms Elementary, very exciting to have movie stars in the building back then!

  6. Dan, you had written about this before and the Westport connections:

    But I am happy to hear it is on TCM’s schedule and will look for it, thanks.

  7. Don,t forget the 1968 Epic ” The Swimmer” with Burt Lancaster .

  8. That wagon in the foreground would have said “Railway Express Agency” on it. For those who don’t know what REA was, here is a link to the Wikipedia description.

  9. Loving also features a scene in Bernie Fuchs’ studio (great windows), when Brooks and Selma are looking for a new home. The Fuchs house is gone now, but here are some memories, courtesy David Apatoff’s blog: