Shirley Temple: As the myth goes, America was brought out of—or at least sufficiently coddled during—the Great Depression by Shirley Temple. Audiences were less interested in such frivolity as WWII loomed—good timing, since Temple had by then gone into double digits. The 1940s featured sporadic appearances, most notably (and uneasily) as a teen in love with Cary Grant in 1947’s The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer . By 1950 she was retired; today she is 81.
Jodie Foster: The poster child for career success at all ages, Foster began acting in commercials and innocuous kiddie fare at age 3. At 14—the same year as Bugsy Malone and Freaky Friday —she reteamed with her Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore director to believably play a teen prostitute in Taxi Driver . The next year it was back to Disney movies opposite David Niven.
Tatum O’Neal: Foster didn’t get her (first) Oscar till she was 26. O’Neal had hers at 10. Alas, her post- Paper Moon career— Bad News Bears aside—is the opposite of Foster’s, with more tabloid work than acting. Too bad: Her performance in Paper Moon is almost surreally good.
Drew Barrymore: She turned out all right. Eventually.
The Olsens: Upon becoming legal—and after a decade in harmless tween DTV purgatory—the former Full House babies made their mainstream crossover volley with New York Minute , which PW ’s Sean Burns described as “so dirty and creepy I might’ve guessed that Roman Polanski or Brian De Palma had directed—if only the fool thing were more competently framed.” It tanked, and then Mary-Kate got to make out with Ben Kingsley in The Wackness .
Dakota Fanning: When she joined the Runaways, Cherie Currie was not yet 16. And the same goes for the former precocious pixie who plays her in the band’s official hagiographic movie—one of the many ways in which this indie treats young teenage sexuality with disarming and refreshing candor.
American Dreamz (2006): The masses have rejected the serious—or allegedly serious—films made about our current stints in Iraq and/or Afghanistan. (For example, In the Valley of Elah , Lions for Lambs , Redacted ) Alas, they’ve been only slightly kinder to films that tried to wrap the same issues in the coating that is genre. No one saw Paul...
Overly unusual protagonists and the requisite miserable Swedish locations aside, this is standard detective stuff.
Another great Italian neo-realist weepie from Vittorio De Sica—who had already given the world Shoe-Shine and Bicycle Thieves —this tale finds an old genetleman (Carlo Battisti) so impoverished he seeks to off himself.