Oscar-Nominated ‘Imitation of Life’ Actress Juanita Moore Dies at 99

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Juanita Moore, a groundbreaking actress and an Academy Award nominee for her role as Lana Turner’s friend in the classic weeper Imitation of Life, has died. 

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6 Comments

  1. Teresa McRae

    One of my favorite movies.

  2. Powerful performance by both actresses…L

    1. Yes they are. Even as a little girl, I cried at the end.

  3. This movie never fails to make me cry, but it’s discomfiting by today’s standards. It seems to put the blame on Sarah Jane for trying to be something she wasn’t. It doesn’t really question the segregation and racial prejudices that drove her to do what she did.

    1. Good point. This was a very bold movie, especially for in the late 50s, during the Jim Crow era. And the only acceptable format for the movie due to the norms during that time. Even with that format (blaming Sarah Jane), a lot of people did not approve of the movie, even though there were a lot of people “passing,” as they called it in those days. The issues of segregation and racial prejudices that influenced the way Sarah Jane acted simply were not considered, but the movie brought the issues front and center. After the movie, there was more discussion of this practice and the reasons why. I didn’t see the movie until a decade later but I remember my family talking about the movie and why Sarah Jane did what she did. Yecheilyah Ysrayl, author of Stella: Beyond the Colored Line, has a series of books on this very topic–passing due to racial prejudices. https://thepbsblog.wordpress.com/

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