1977's Last Hurrah is a TV-movie remake of the 1958 John Ford film of the same name. Both versions are based on the Edwin O'Connor novel about the last days of flamboyant, larcenous Mayor Frank Skeffington--based upon the equally colorful, equally underhanded Boston mayor James Curley. Carroll O'Connor plays Skeffington in the 1977 version (it was Spencer Tracy back in 1958). O'Connor spends the bulk of the film trying in manners both subtle and strongarm to win re-election--and to race the clock against his own failing health. While the 1958 Last Hurrah is superior, the 1977 Hurrah has the saving grace of Carroll O'Connor's exuberant performance; O'Connor also wrote the script for this remake.
by Hal Erickson synopsis