Make Way for Tomorrow

DVD - 2009
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Make Way for Tomorrow
In this 'enormously moving Depression-era depiction of the frustrations of family, aging, and the generation gap' [-- Container], an elderly couple must move in with their adult children when they lose their home.


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Dec 13, 2014
  • Nursebob rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

When Barkley and Lucy Cooper, married for fifty years, discover that the bank is foreclosing on their home (Barkley has been unable to find work) the couple turn to their adult children for help. Faced with having to look after mom and dad the kids reluctantly agree to take them in; Lucy moves in with one son and his wife while Barkley moves in with another, three hundred miles away. But when it appears that this temporary fix may become permanent and the other siblings are unable (read: unwilling) to help, troubles begin to mount. None of the children want their parents underfoot, even the maid protests over having to babysit Lucy while a granddaughter refuses to bring friends home due to grandma's incessant talking. For their part, the old couple seem too set in their ways to effect a compromise even though they sense they are not wanted. The children eventually hit upon a solution, behind their parents’ backs of course, leading to one of cinema's most heartbreaking endings. Equal parts droll comedy and soft spoken tragedy, Leo McCarey's indictment of the Generation Gap circa 1930s shows that nothing much has changed in the intervening eighty years: some grown-ups still find aging parents an obstacle rather than an obligation. Stars Victor Moore and Beulah Bondi look and act as if they truly were married for half a century; their unspoken understanding, wistful recollections, and gentle banter anchor the film with a profound pathos without succumbing to cheap sympathy. Furthermore the children, all played with consummate skill, are not the two-dimensional adult brats you would expect but rather complex characters exhibiting a wide range of conflicting emotions. The film's final scene, beautifully underplayed, will have you reaching for that last kleenex.

Jul 15, 2014
  • Monolith rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

What a powerful heart-wrencher from Leo McCarey. Beulah Bondi and Victor Moore were exceptional as the silently suffering elderly parents, and the supporting cast was great also. This is an undeservingly overlooked treasure of a film. FIVE STARS.

Apr 10, 2014
  • Ron@Ottawa rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

This is an old film on a familiar subject - seniors neglected by their grown-up children. While it is easy to lay blame on the children, I couldn't help but ask the question why they got themselves into such a dire financial situation, losing their home to the bank, in the first place. It is a film with a sad ending, but there are moments of joy for the ageing couple. 'Tokyo Story', also shot in black and white, told a similar story. I must say I like TS more as a film.

Apr 07, 2014
  • john_doh17 rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

Old married couple painfully fade away. Just a real heart breaker at the end. I think it shows our values have been shot for a lot longer than we will admit.

Apr 02, 2014
  • lukasevansherman rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

A heartbreaking, neglected gem from the 30s, given new life by the fine people at Criterion. A rare Hollywood film that takes on old age with poignancy and an unsentimental tone bordering on bleak, with both the leads playing characters older than they actually were. Leo McCarey also directed classics like "Duck Soup," "An Affair to Remember" and "The Awful Truth," for which he won best director. One of the extras is a short interview with former wunderkind Peter Bogdanovich, who may have an encylopedic knowledge of film, but is a shameless name dropper, mentioning Orson Welles and Jerry Lewis in the first minute. Great movie regardless.

Dec 17, 2012
  • Sanrin rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Authentic, unsentimental -- combines deep sadness with moments of humor, romance, and beauty. Excellent acting, and the extras (an informative commentary & an interview) bring insights into the movie and its making. A must see!

Apr 26, 2011
  • jbauman1 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Good acting and a social issue that resonates into our current time period....Look for the scene where the mother short-circuits her favorite son's plan with a plan of her own.....And the anniversary scenes of the older couple at the hotel where they'd honeymooned....Good stuff!

Mar 10, 2011
  • Glencoe_Mike rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Very sweet movie. It's a shame more people haven't heard of it. The second half is as poignant a piece of cinema as I've seen.

Feb 18, 2011
  • sheilamr rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

A poignant film. Apparently Orson Welles said that the film was so sad, "it would make a stone cry." Well, it is a sad but beautiful tale.

Aug 01, 2010
  • davidevans rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This is an unknown masterpiece. Leo McLary said when he got the Oscar for The Awful Truth that they were giving it to him for the wrong movie. Hard-nosed and relatively unsentimental, considering the subject matter.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add a Notice

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Find it at CLEVNET