ISSUE DATE: July 29, 1966
It is this mercury of the spirit, this added luster of vitality that adorns the beauty within the beauty of Lauren Bacall. The theatergoers who have made her Broadway comedy Cactus Flower an S.R.O. hit since the night it opened seven months ago do not think of Bacall as a woman of 41, nor does she, nor does the amorous dentist-hero of the play, Barry Nelson, 44, whom she guilefully lures away from a mistress half her age.
What is fascinating about Bacall is not so much her kinetic sea-green eyes or her svelte-as-sin 129-lb. body, but the distillation of glamour into poise, inner amusement, and enriched femininity that no 20-year-old sex kitten has lived long enough to acquire. Playgoers can sense the discipline that shapes her performance, the reliable professionalism of the middle years, so that in her deft command of her craft as an actress-comedienne she is an authentic as well as beguilingly lovely symbol of the generation.
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