Let's speak about a work of art by Douglas Sirk (we may notice that the version by Stahl, released in 1934 is far more reserved).
you may have preconceived ideas about the 50's Hollywoodian melodramas:
soppy and camp are the words which in most of people's view encapsulate that genre.
And if Sirk's movies conjure up tears (meanwhile you see well-dressed women facing adversity), the director managed to make it more profund that it seems.
Indeed, he mingles social criticism, religion, (self)mockery and knows how to use colors and décors to deliver his message and not only to depict an idealized postwar America.
So, let's view Imitation of Life, in which:
-you'll meet Lana Turner who plays her own role as an actress more loved for her sex-appeal than for her acting actually,
-you'll know why, in Grease (and more recently in Glee), Sandra Dee embodies the ingenue,
-you'll cry (I told you so) over the tragic mother-daughter relationship, performed by Juanita Moore and Susan Kohner.
Click on the music video to listen to I'm living in shame by the Suprêmes, based on the movie.
Last but not least, Sirk knew his greatest success with this movie but as he felt the time had come for the "new Hollywood" (Easy Rider, the Swimmer...), he prefered to go back home in Germany; where a director named Fassbinder and fan of Sirk, would tell us about postwar Germany through the eyes of melodramatic héroïnes grappling with History.