A couple’s life and love are destroyed when they win the lottery in this tragic tale of turn-of-the-century San Francisco.
McTeague and Trina are in love, and with the modest income from McTeague’s dentistry office, their needs are few. But when Trina wins a small fortune from a lottery ticket, jealousy and distrust begin to unravel their happy home. As tension erupts between McTeague and Trina’s cousin Marcus, Trina’s impulse to save her winnings slowly gives way to a pathological obsession with hoarding money. Betrayed and destitute, the couple embarks on a journey down a path of violence, theft, and murder.
Considered transgressive for its brutality and sordid subject matter upon first publication in 1899, McTeague has since served as the basis for the films Greed (1924) by Erich von Stroheim and Slow Burn (2000), starring Minnie Driver and James Spader. Widely acclaimed as Frank Norris’s masterpiece, the novel was hailed as “a literary masterpiece” by the New York Times.
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The classic novel by Frank Norris is revisited in this 1989 recording by an immensely talented and well-directed group of actors. Set in 1899 San Francisco, Norris's story relates the life and times of a dentist, played wonderfully by Stacy Keach, and his wife, Trina (Carol Kane). With a celebrity cast of nearly 40 players that features superior performances from, among others, Helen Hunt, Ed Asner, Marsha Mason, Teri Garr and Hector Elizondo, the production is flawless and captivating. With music and realistic sound effects, director Gordon Hunt takes full advantage of the performing weapons at his disposal. Notable standouts include Joe Spano, who plays Trina's jealous cousin, Katherine Helmond as Miss Baker and Bud Cort portraying an array of secondary characters.