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Wrestling with Alligators is a 1998 drama directed by Laurie Weltz. The film is set in 1959 and follows the life of the teenage Maddy Hawkins (played by Aleksa Palladino). Maddy is a street wise teenage runaway who has ended up in a women only rooming house. There she lives with a widowed French war bride roommate Claire (played by Joely Richardson) who is pregnant with the baby of Rick. Rick is a garage worker who Claire doesn't really love or want to marry. Also in the rooming house are Lulu, an eccentric silent screen star (played by Claire Bloom) and Mary, a young artist (played by Adrienne Shelly). The group of women become true friends and help each other out as they struggle to form their own destinies and challenge tradition. The women face heavy choices about abortion, pregnancy, careers and loyalty while living in a world on the verge of dramatic change.