Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me



IMDb Rating 7.5/10 10 990 990

Plot summary

Broadway legend Elaine Stritch remains in the spotlight at eighty-seven years old. Join the uncompromising Tony and Emmy Award-winner both on and off stage in this revealing documentary. With interviews from Tina Fey, Nathan Lane, Hal Prince and others, ELAINE STRITCH: SHOOT ME blends rare archival footage and intimate cinema vérité to reach beyond Stritch’s brassy exterior, revealing a multi-dimensional portrait of a complex woman and an inspiring artist.

Uploaded by: FREEMAN
July 03, 2024 at 01:00 PM

Top cast

Sarah Jessica Parker as Self - Audience Member
Tina Fey as Self
Alec Baldwin as Self
Woody Allen as Self
745.5 MB
English 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 21 min
Seeds ...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by paul-allaer 8 / 10

"A molotov cocktail of savvy, madness and genius"

"Elaine Stretch" (2013 release; 80 min.) is a candid and intimate look at the legendary Broadway star, now age 86. As the movie opens, we spend time with Elaine as she goes about her business at her apartment in the Hotel Carlyle. Elaine is gearing up for another show, "Elaine Sings Sondheim" and we watch her at the rehearsals. The documentary contains tons of testimonials, including James Gandolfini (RIP), who quips "if we both had been 35 when we met, I'm sure it would've resulted in a torrid love affair that ends badly. I love that woman", ha!

The documentary also shows Elaine battling diabetes and alcoholism. When asked point blank what she fears the most, she answers "drinking". The other challenge she battles is to remember the lyrics of the songs she is to perform, be it during the rehearsals or during the show itself. It all leads up to Elaine's performance at the Town Hall in NY.

The documentary also contains a bunch of archival clips, including Elaine performing on a TV variety show in 1955, yes almost 60 years ago, but also her unforgettable speech at the Emmys some 10 years ago. Kudos to director Chiemi Karasawa, a veteran in the film industry but her debut as a feature director. She is able to bring us an honest portrayal of an aging ("I'm older but don't call me old!") Elaine Stritch. I can only hope I have the same energy and enthusiasm for life if I make it to 86. This documentary opened this weekend at one of the art-house theaters here in SW Ohio, and the late matinée I saw this at was PACKED, believe it or not. "Elaine Stritch: Shoot Me" is an enjoyable documentary and worth checking out, be it in the theater or on DVD/Blu-ray.

Reviewed by kevinpkeelan 8 / 10


(I felt compelled to check the SPOILER ALERT box because standards as to what constitutes a "spoiler" vary widely among film lovers. Some people want to be told just bout nothing about a given film. Movie trailers generally reveal far, far too much. As a film reviewer I try to keep to myself that which I would not want to know before experiencing a movie.)


I've always appreciated her flamboyant performances, but after seeing this delightful and disturbing biopic about this great dame of stage and screen, I find it impossible not to adore her. Elaine would be the first to admit that she is a "difficult" woman but the last to apologize for it. (We see some behind the scenes footage on the set of TV's 30 ROCK where Elaine is playing Alec Baldwin's "difficult", borderline loony mother and we get the very strong sense that she is really playing herself! Mr. Baldwin receives no small amount of crap from this barbed cactus of a woman, but he gives as good as he gets, and the wonderful closing credits reveal him to be one of the films executive producers. Good move, Alec.)

Just about to turn 87 at the time SHOOT ME was filmed, the determined octogenarian is attempting to mount yet another bravura one-woman review, and though they had all been triumphs in a long and storied career, this one may be a bridge too far. Her health and memory are fading fast, and the lyrics in the Sondheim tribute she is undertaking are many and complex. She can't so much sing as bark and growl, but nobody barks and growls better than this one-of-a-kind performer. Her outspoken directness both masks and reveals a profound vulnerability that is very disarming and endearing. Ms. Stritch effortlessly brings the term "feisty" to new extremes, giving (mostly) good-natured grief to everyone she encounters. We see amazing footage from her early career that reminds us that this singer/actor/dancer/comedienne/personality has been terrific for a long, long time.

But there's not much time left. Elaine knows this, she thinks about it and feels it deeply, sharing her thoughts and fears nakedly to the camera disheveled and sans makeup in her sick bed. It's wrenching. She knows all too well that that final curtain is soon to fall, and fears that this time, there will be no curtain call. The segments about the horror, humiliation and indignity of growing old are heartbreaking. The segments showing this fierce, brave woman persevering despite a failing body and faltering memory are absolutely inspiring.

Along with Rob Bowman, her longtime piano accompanist, we fret and worry for this irascible but lovable woman that she has bitten off more than she can chew. Rehearsals are disastrous. She can barely remember the opening lines of the first song. As the audience assembles for opening night, we know something they didn't: that the formidable Ms. Stritch was not vaguely ready for that curtain to rise, and in fact, may never be And then there is her struggle with the bottle to contend with. She keeps telling us she has cut down to one drink a day, as we see her prepare her third or fourth highball. (Denial, as Mark Twain quipped, is more than just a river in Egypt.)

See this wonderful film prepared to laugh and cry and think and feel. The way this consummate professional handles the inevitable lapses in front of live audiences is a true feat of showmanship and a wonder to behold.

I love to share my enthusiasm for great films like this, and direct people to great films that might be just off the radar for most people. On the flip side, I JUST HATE SPENDING MY TIME OR MONEY ON MOVIES THAT I JUST DON'T ENJOY. Life is too short- my wallet too empty for that crap. Fellow cinephiles! Please lend me your ear. I publish little-read essays constantly in the QUIET IN THE BACK channel of my KPKworld blog. This was my 100th post in the category. Find the other 99 at:


Reviewed by mark.waltz 8 / 10

Taking Broadway's late legend out on the Wonderful Town.

Call her madam, the queen of the vodka stinger, the bongo bongo lady from the Kongo, or even the woman who taught us how to "Zip" properly, Elaine Stritch is a force of nature to be reckoned with, even after her recent departure from our world. It's obvious to me that Heaven has been brightened by a highly complex woman who never ceased to be herself in spite of the odds which lead her life to include much alcohol. "Give me a bottle of vodka and a floor plan", she admits having told a bartender, and after decades of sobriety, decided that "one drink a day" would suit her just fine. In the documentary of her later years which leads to the decision to move back to Detroit after decades away (living in both Manhattan and London where she became a house-hold name in the 1970's), Stritchie is still living and loving life in her mid-late 80's, enjoying her fame from her world tour of "Elaine Stritch at Liberty" and her discovery by younger generations as Alec Baldwin's domineering mother on "30 Rock". She obviously loves people and pretty much makes a major impression on everybody she meets, not only as a stage legend with a 70+ year career, but as a marvelous eccentric as well.

Friends from the Broadway stage, T.V. and A.A. meetings re-live their encounters with her, and some vintage footage even shows her singing "You're Just in Love" from "Call Me Madam" with co-star Russell Nype. A medical scare with her reacting to a drop in blood sugar shows her every day fears of being a diabetic. No stone is unturned in showing the soul of this fantastic lady who bares her heart as easily as a baby cries. There are a lot of life lessons to be learned from her stories, especially her determination to face becoming older with grace and spirit. "I'm getting older, not old", she says, yet is aware that as time goes by and birthdays approach, her lifeline is decreasing. Still present is the love she feels for her late husband John Bay, and mentions of Bay's English Muffins keeps his legacy alive. Permission from Sondheim to change the lyrics of his songs in her one-woman show and testimonies from Harold Prince as to the history of their friendship give an overview that the history of Broadway will never be forgotten, especially with such stage stalwarts as Nathan Lane and Cherry Jones giving their own point of view as well.

For those who think that this is a self-serving piece of egotistical self congratulatory P.R., they are missing the point. This complicated day and age needs survival stories of such people like Elaine Stritch who have been through hell and back, through good times and bum times, yet still survived. She did it in times when civilization didn't rely on technology, and she dared to come to New York as a naive Catholic girl straight out of college. Her personal memories expand beyond her confessions about Brando, Ben Gazzara and the Rock in "At Liberty" and now even includes a future president. If you want to see what made Broadway tick and the types of personalities which it almost lacks today, check out "Elaine Stritch, Shoot Me". You won't want to shoot, only hug.

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