Runaway Daughters (1956 film)
|Directed by||Edward L. Cahn|
|Produced by||Alex Gordon|
|Written by||Lou Rusoff|
Mary Ellen Kay
|Music by||Ronald Stein|
Audrey Barton is the teen daughter of rich, irresponsible parents. When school classmate Tommy brings her home from a date, they spy Ruth Barton, her mother, passionately kissing a neighbor.
Audrey's girlfriends have troubled home lives, too. Mary Rubach has a strict father who doesn't approve of her boyfriend Bob being 20. Angie Forrest's mother is off honeymooning with a third husband. Angie is glad when her brother Tony pays a visit, bringing along his girl, Dixie Jackson.
Tommy tattles at school about what he saw Audrey's mother do. Taunted by another girl at school, Audrey gets into a fight and is expelled, putting her graduation at risk. Ruth shows no concern whatsoever with her daughter's dilemma, telling her that finding a man is more important than getting an education anyway. George Barton displays little interest in his daughter's situation, either.
Bob joins the Army and urges Mary to elope, but her dad beats him up. Angie's brother leaves for Los Angeles, leaving her depressed. When a birthday party for Audrey is spoiled by the grown-ups, spiking the punch with gin, Audrey's had enough. She takes her gift from her parents, a new convertible, picks up Mary and Angie and the three girls head for L.A., running away from home.
Knowing the police will be looking for them, the girls ditch Audrey's car and steal one. They look up Tony and Dixie, who find the girls jobs in a seedy dance hall. A remorseful Ruth hires a private detective to find her daughter. The cops come looking, too, investigating the stolen car, which Angie speeds off in, right over a cliff, resulting in her death.
Mary's dad relents, letting her join Bob at his army base. Audrey returns home, her mother promising that things there will be better.
The script was allegedly based on an incident that writer Lou Rusoff came across when he worked as a social worker.
Anna Sten came out of retirement to make the movie. Tom Conway had a stroke during filming and was replaced by John Litel. The film was shot in nine days, only running two and a half hours into overtime.
Male lead Steve Terrell was signed to a long term contract by Arkoff for 15 films.
- Samuel Z Arkoff & Richard Turbo, Flying Through Hollywood By the Seat of My Pants, Birch Lane Press, 1992 p 50
- Anna Sten Resuming; Petal Premiere Set, Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 16 July 1956: 27
- Gary A. Smith, American International Pictures: The Golden Years, Bear Manor Media 2014 p 40
- Mark McGee, Faster and Furiouser: The Revised and Fattened Fable of American International Pictures, McFarland, 1996 p65-68
- Anita Ekberg Pursued for 'Screaming Mimi;' 'Galveston' Near Ready, Schallert, Edwin. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 21 Dec 1956: B7.