All About Eve Starring: Bette Davis, Anne Baxter, George Sanders, Celeste Holm Director: Joseph L Mankiewicz The film: A tantrum-throwing, chain-smoking, drama queen with an acerbic tongue and penchant for cocktails. It could only be Bette Davis, and it could only be All About Eve, the perfectly crafted picture that takes a peek behind the curtain of New York theatre in the 1940s. In arguably her best role, and one that resurrected her career, Davis (right) plays to perfection 40-something stage star Margo Channing who, under that hard-as-nails exterior, fears her sell-by date is fast approaching. Enter stage left the young, saccharine-coated Eve Harrington (Anne Baxter), Channing's star-struck protege whose glowing enthusiasm and innocence masks a calculated ambition: Eve wants Channing's life and everything in it, including her leading roles and her much younger director-boyfriend (Gary Merrill). (In real life, Merrill became Davis' fourth husband in 1950.) While Davis and Baxter give flawless performances, none of it would have been possible without director-writer Joseph L Mankiewicz, whose scintillating script is one of the best Hollywood has heard. When a sozzled Channing declares to her party guests, 'Fasten your seat belts. It's going to be a bumpy night', you really feel like you should be buckling up. The film was nominated for a record 14 Oscars (the flimsy Titanic equalled that feat in 1997), and took home six Academy Awards including best picture, best director and best screenplay. George Sanders, who plays venomous theatre critic Addison DeWitt, also won for best supporting actor. With its phoney actors, vicious columnists and age-sensitive actresses, All About Eve is as relevant to show business today as it was 50 years ago. Truly timeless. The extras: Considering the film's standing, Fox has failed to deliver in the extras department, with only the original trailer on this release. A more complete story is on the way, including two commentaries (Celeste Holm and the director's son Christopher Mankiewicz) and an American Movie Classics channel 'Backstory' featurette.