All That Heaven Allows

  • U
  • Douglas Sirk (1955)
  • US
  • 84 min
Film Review
Reviewed By
4 out of 5

After the successful but preposterous weepie Magnificent Obsession, director Douglas Sirk reteamed with stars Jane Wyman and Rock Hudson for this exquisite melodrama. Wealthy widow Cary Scott (Wyman) risks the disapproval of her curtain-twitching neighbours and her own grown-up children when she embarks on a May-December romance with free-spirited gardener Ron Kirby (Hudson). Both leads are wonderful, with Hudson in particular bringing charm and tenderness to his role. Sumptuous Technicolor photography and lavish sets and costumes mean the film looks beautiful, and Sirk cleverly juxtaposes this with the ugliness of the attitudes that lie just beneath the surface. He deftly critiques the moral values (and hypocrisy) of 1950s America while simultaneously crafting a genuinely touching romance, making this one to melt even the hardest of hearts.

Plot Summary

Melodrama starring Jane Wyman and Rock Hudson. Wealthy widow Cary Scott, after years of shunning company, falls in love with gardener Ron Kirby, who is 15 years her junior. The difference in social status as well as their age shocks her family and friends, and soon their relationship is affected by gossip.

Cast and crew


Cary Scott
Jane Wyman
Ron Kirby
Rock Hudson
Sara Warren
Agnes Moorehead
Conrad Nagel
Alida Anderson
Virginia Grey
Kay Scott
Gloria Talbott
Ned Scott
William Reynolds
Mona Flash
Jacqueline de Wit
Mick Anderson
Charles Drake
Leigh Snowden
Howard Hoffer
Donald Curtis
George Warren
Alex Gerry


Douglas Sirk

Other Information

Theatrical distributor: 
J.A.R.F.D. Ltd
Available on DVD
Certificate U