Producers haven’t flinched from picking the scabs off the body of 1960s rock-and-roll. While there are certainly similarities to the tragic story of Janis Joplin, The Rose emerges as its own self-contained tale.
What’s puzzling is that the screenwriters have chosen to dwell solely on the downward career spiral of Bette Midler’s character, known on and off-stage as The Rose.
Revolving around the star are various satellites, including boyfriend Frederic Forrest, manager Alan Bates and road manager Barry Primus.
Result is an ultra-realistic look at the infusion of money, sex, drugs and booze into the simple process of singing a song, a chore Midler does faultlessly in several excellent concert sequences.
1979: Nominations: Best Actress (Bette Midler), Supp. Actor (Frederic Forrest), Editing, Sound