WriterJohn Gay, Robert Oliphant Release dateFebruary 3, 1982 (1982-02-03) NominationsPrimetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Film Editing - Special CastBette Davis (Esther McDonald Cimino), Penny Fuller (Mrs Polanski), Christopher Guest (Philip Ryan), Alexa Kenin (Karen Cimino), George Hearn (George Cimino) Similar moviesBette Davis appears in A Piano for Mrs Cimino and Strangers: The Story of a Mother and Daughter
A depressed widow (Bette Davis) hires a lawyer after being ruled senile and placed in a nursing home by her son.
A Piano for Mrs. Cimino is a 1982 American television movie produced and directed by George Schaefer. The teleplay by John Gay is based on the novel of the same name by Robert Oliphant. It was broadcast on February 3 by CBS.
Esther Cimino, a music teacher who has reached retirement age, finds that her mental faculties are slipping somewhat. The film is a trenchant, realistic study of the ravages and displacements, socially, physically, and mentally, that are visited upon a once-proud, sensitive, and still highly intelligent woman who is declared mentally incompetent by her children. She is subjected to a hearing, where her blurred responses prompt the judge to put her in a nursing home, and she begins to deteriorate. However, her granddaughter who loves her rouses her back to life and helps her learn how to live again.
The story focuses on Esther Cimino, an aging piano teacher who is misdiagnosed as having dementia shortly after her husband passes away. Her son George has her declared incompetent and puts her affairs in the hands of a questionable trustee. Her granddaughter Karen places the woman in a convalescent home overseen by a caring director, and under his patient care Mrs. Cimino blossoms, only to learn her business, home, and all her possessions, including her beloved piano, were sold during her confinement.
With her dignity and health restored, Mrs. Cimino tries to regain control of her life by establishing her independence and retaining control over her remaining assets. Assisting her in her battles is her long lost friend Barney Fellman, who brings her the unexpected promise of romance in her later years.
Bette Davis appears in A Piano for Mrs Cimino and Strangers: The Story of a Mother and Daughter. Bette Davis appears in A Piano for Mrs Cimino and Right of Way. Bette Davis appears in A Piano for Mrs Cimino and Housewife. Intimate Strangers (1977). Losing Chase (1996).