Saturday, November 28, 2009

Gone with the Wind-Movie



Recently I happened to catch a sort of Gone with the Wind marathon-meaning the movie, a making of documentary, and bios of Vivien Leigh (my favorite actress) and Clark Gable (I didn't watch this). I did not watch the whole thing (Scarlett's miscarriage made me cry too much and I knew I wouldn't be able to handle the rest). It also made me want to reread the book so I'm hoping to do that this December/January. I also thought I'd share some of my (random) thoughts:
  • If you haven't seen GWTW, you should. I feel that it is the greatest example of studio movie making and epic movies.
  • I didn't realize this but Leslie Howard, who played Ashley, was 46 during filming. His character is supposed to be about 26 and he in no way looks 26 to me. I'm not a big fan of Ashley (My mom doesn't like watching this with me because I find myself incapable of not yelling at him for being awful)
  • Jean Arthur was among the actresses vying for the role of Scarlett. While I can imagine Bette Davis as Scarlett (I've seen Jezebel after all) and Paulette Goddard, I cannot think of Jean Arthur in the role. This is mostly because she annoys me (I've seen her in They Can't Take That Away From Me, Talk of the Town, Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, and Mr Smith Goes to Washington-she was bearable in the last two but quite grating in the first two). I'm not entirely sure why she annoys me so but I do not enjoy when she is the focus of a picture.
  • I love Melanie! Olivia de Havilland is so warm and sweet and caring. Just lovely! And I liked when the snotty Atlanta women accept things because she says they're alright.
  • I saw this on an imdb board discussing Scarlett/Vivien's age. Scarlett begins the book at 16 years and it ends I think 10 years later. But Selznick focused on women in their twenties. Admittedly I'm not sure if there would have been an actress in her teens who would have been able to play Scarlett but I like thinking about the possibilities.
  • I also really admire Scarlett particularly as she flees Atlanta for Tara because I believe she's 20 there and thus my age. I'm not sure I could be so strong. I also admire her strong business sense and work ethic even if morally she's questionable.
  • Favorite Outfit-This may be obvious as you can see in the picture but it's the red dress.
  • Favorite Part-Rhett bidding on Scarlett at the Atlanta Bazaar and then she gets to dance!
  • Second Favorite Part-Rhett kissing her during his proposal and that whole exchange actually
  • Third Favorite Part-Sewing/Reading while waiting for the men to return from burning the shantytown
  • Honorable Mention-Any time Scarlett slapped someone-just awesome!
  • Things I Have Problems With: marrying your cousin-maybe it's just because my male cousins are rather lame but and of course the whole genetic disorders that come with first-cousin association but I find that so gross and just plain weird; the vigilante justice of the men (No! Just no!); Ashley says he would have freed all of his slaves-okay, and then do what? Scarlett saved them all after the war and pushed Ashley into business, what would he have done otherwise?; and then Scarlett is blamed for the embrace with Ashley-now it is certainly her fault but it's Ashley's too. I hate that he is treated as if he is blameless and I liked Rhett's description of him as unable to be faithful in mind and unable to be unfaithful in body-so true.

2 comments:

  1. Apparently bullet points don't work :-(

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hello, I'm a huge fan and a bit of a stickler!...

    You say 'if you haven't seen' and other references to the film and not the book. So to give you one less problem with the film (as no one should have problems with it ;)... If Scarlett had not pushed Ashley into business he and Melly would have gone north where Ashley would have gone into banking :)

    Otherwise; I'm sure the slaves would have stayed at Twelve Oaks in exchange for bed and board. I'm sure he was rich enough to live without them; besides money wasn't the be all and end all for him and I'm sure he'd have happily hired people/ex slaves.

    Everyone is gunning for Scarlett, except a small few, and women with minds of their own were always considered 'trouble' back then - easy targets/enemies. Rhett's description is, I agree, perfect in every way :)

    I hope this helps you to love Gone With The Wind all the more... :)

    ReplyDelete

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