This film shows the best of the American cinema. Whether we like the film, or not, one has to recognize the greatest achievement, perhaps, of the creative talent of the people working in the movie industry. "Gone with the Wind" represents a monumental leap, as well as a departure, for the movies, as they were done prior to this film.The vision of David O. Selznick, the power behind bringing Margaret Mitchell's massive account about the South, before and after the Civil War, pays handsomely with the film that Victor Fleming directed. This movie will live forever because it <more>
reminds us of how this great nation came into being, despite the different opinions from the two stubborn factions in the war."Gone with the Wind" brought together the best people in Hollywood. The end result is the stunning film that for about four hours keep us interested in the story unfolding in the screen. Of course, credit must be due to the director, Victor Fleming, and his vision, as well as the adaptation by Sydney Howard, who gave the right tone to the film. The gorgeous cinematography created by Ernest Haller gives us a vision of the gentle South before the war, and the Phoenix raising from the ashes of a burned Atlanta. The music of Max Steiner puts the right touch behind all that is seen in the movie.One can't conceive another Scarlett O'Hara played by no one, but Vivien Leigh. Her beauty, her sense of timing, her intelligent approach to this role, makes this a hallmark performance. Ms. Leigh was at the best moment of her distinguished career and it shows. Scarlett goes from riches to rags, back to riches again and in the process finds an inner strength she didn't know she possessed. Her impossible love for Ashley will consume her and will keep her away from returning the love to the man that really loves her, Rhett.The same thing applies to the Rhett Butler of Clark Gable. No one else comes to mind for playing him with the passion he projects throughout the movie. This is a man's man. Captain Butler was torn between his loyalty to the cause of the South and his sense of decency. His love for Scarlett, the woman he knows is in love with a dream, speaks eloquently for itself.The other two principals, Olivia de Havilland and Leslie Howard, give performances that are amazing to watch. Ms. de Havilland's Melanie Hamilton is perfect. Melanie is loyal to the woman that does everything to undermine her marriage to Ashley. Mr. Howard's Ashley gives a perfect balance to the man in love with his wife, while Scarlett keeps tempting him.The rest of the cast is too numerous to make justice to all the actors one sees on the screen, but omitting the contribution of Hattie McDaniel to the film would be sinful. Ms. McDaniel was such a natural actress that she is excellent no matter in what movie she is playing. This huge talent is a joy to watch.Comments to this forum express their objections to the way the race relations play in the movie, but being realistic, this movie speaks about the not too distant past where all kinds of atrocities, such as the slavery, were the norm of the land. While those things are repugnant to acknowledge, in the film, they are kept at a minimum. After all, this film is based on a book by one of the daughters of that South, Margaret Mitchell, who is presenting the story as she saw it in her mind, no doubt told to her from relatives that lived in that period of a horrible page in the American history.Enjoy this monumental classic in all its splendor.
A Classic in the History of Movie-making. (by mikazuki)
Every time I watch this film, and I've seen it more times than I can remember, I'm always astonished by the freshness of the story, the power of the emotions it conveys and the beautiful, detailed images of a time long gone. That this film was made in the 1930's is almost incomprehensible to me. The challenges that had to be overcome in order to bring it to life must have been monumental. But come to life it did, and still does! A triumph of film-making ingenuity and genius, that will live on for many generations to come.
The Greatest Film of its Time, and All Time (by dhable)
I believe that when one views a film, one should consider the context in which it was made.Barely 10 years after talking pictures were first created; less than that after the first full-length color feature film was created; near the end of the greatest depression this country ever experienced, and in which pretty much the only entertainment available to most was radio or the movies; David O Selznik decided to turn the biggest pot-boiler blockbuster novel into a movie.And what a movie. Stunning color, the most popular mail actor of his time, perfect music score, incredible action scenes, <more>
story line only 70 years removed from when it happened, and on, and on. Can you imagine what a store-clerk or a farmer, or a teacher experienced in that world, seeing Gone With the Wind? What was there to compare with? 1939 was a watershed year for great movies, and this one was the greatest produced. Try watching this movie as if there were no TV, no DVD's, only a few radio stations, spending maybe the second to the last quarter you owned, never having seen such a movie before, and you get what I mean. Masterful for its time, and still timeless today.
Gerard O'Hara Thomas Mitchell , an Irish immigrant, settles in North Georgia and becomes a prosperous plantation owner By great luck he marries young Ellen Robillard Barbara O'Neill of Savannah, the daughter of one of the noblest Georgian families and becomes accepted by his aristocratic neighbors They are blessed with three daughters, Scarlett Vivien Leigh , Suellen Evelyn Keyes , and Carreen Ann Rutherford .Scarlett, the eldest, worships her mother Yet, under her beauty and Southern coquetry, she is charming, but proud, willful and vain She believes she is in love with <more>
Ashley Wilkes Leslie Howard , a good-hearted young army captain But Ashley loves his cousin, Melanie Hamilton Olivia de Havilland , a delicate, selfless woman He is frightened by Scarlett's energy and animation And although he admits his feelings for her, he is afraid to marry her and decides to take Melanie for his bride When Scarlett loses Ashley she is more certain than ever that she must have him On their wedding day, she meets Rhett Butler Clark Gable , a wealthy adventurer from an old Charleston family Rhett, a gamblerwho believes that self-interest is the motive of all human conductis attracted by Scarlett's beauty and realizes that they are equally merciless and conscienceless Vivien Leigh is magnificent as the spoiled, selfish southern belle... She carries the picture, and controls it... She reproduces the spirited character of Scarlett in all its fluent complexity... Clark Gablewith a smile and great light in his eyesis fascinating as the elegant, heroic gentleman ... He is perfect as the ladies man... His dramatic high point is his scene crying in Melanie's presence... His love scenes with Scarlett give the picture a vibrancy that is one of its great attractions... The film begins with their first stormy meeting in the library at Twelve Oaks and intensifies at the Atlanta bazaar, when he shocks the confederacy by bidding $l00 "in gold," to dance with the newly widowed Mrs. Hamilton who cares for nothing but herself Hattie McDaniel gives a rich characterization as Mammy, Scarlett's shrewd black servant who was never fooled by Scarlett's airs and tears...With a memorable music score by Max Steiner, the film was an instant classic, winner of eight Academy Awards...
Like the film? Read the book. (by paskuniag-584-890551)
I've seen the film many times, have always enjoyed it. But I've been reading the book for the first time. It's a very long novel, and you have to stay with it if you want to see the ending. It's a good read, but Margaret Mitchell, former newspaper reporter, is very thorough in her description of both Southern culture and the changes that the Civil War brought to it. It's the size of the book that was the biggest challenge for David O Selznick. Not what parts to film, but which parts to leave out. So many characters that appeared in the book couldn't be introduced in <more>
the movie without extending the film's length to well over four hours. So he had Sidney Howard write the screenplay, then cut that down to a filmable length by hiring several more writers to further pare the script, and was still rewriting it himself while it was being filmed. Selznick was close to running out of money, so he asked his angel, millionaire Jock Whitney, to loan him enough to finish the film. The film was finally completed and edited, then was test-marketed at a theatre not far from LA. The viewers were excited about having seen it and said so on their preview cards, which allowed Selznick to rest easy, knowing he had a hit on his hands.
The fact that as at my time of writing, "Gone With The Wind" stands only at number 152 in the best movie rankings of this site, I hope might be mainly attributable to the relative youth of the posters here. Here surely is Golden Age Hollywood's lasting monument to itself, which like another big-subject civil war movie from a previous generation D W Griffiths' "Birth Of A Nation" while politically flawed in its treatment of black people, nevertheless stands as a significant and magnificent piece of movie-making.It's a film I'd dearly love to see on the big <more>
screen but all my viewings of it so far have been on TV which can't begin to do justice to the scale and colour of the achievement here. I know there's some contention about who directed which parts of it but I'm going to give my kudos to Victor Fleming who I believe did the lion's share of the work behind the camera. The sets are magnificent and the set-pieces even more so with several jaw-dropping scenes which are testament to artistic imagination and technical achievement in equal measure. Of course the two most celebrated of these I suppose are Rhett Butler's rescue of Melanie, Scarlett and Missy just ahead of the burning edifices of Atlanta and the rising dolly-shot of the wounded and dead of the Confederate Army as Scarlett seeks out Dr Meade. But let's not forget the acting too, especially the two leads who are both terrific, Gable, in his greatest role, is mean, moody and magnificent, while Vivien Leigh in her Hollywood breakthrough role is captivating as the wild, wilful and wonderful Scarlett O'Hara. While the characters of Ashley and Melanie Wilkes seem almost too good to be true Ashley's guilty feelings for Scarlett aside , they are nonetheless beautifully played by Leslie Howard and Olivia De Havilland. Hattie McDaniel belies the racial stereotyping of her Mammy character to deliver an unforgettable, often scene-stealing performance. It is difficult today to witness some of the political incorrectness of the treatment given to the black characters, in the main shown as subservient, excitable and slow-witted, not sufficiently redeemed by their brave deeds in the film Big Sam saves Scarlett from being raped, while Mammy effectively acts as the conscience of the film and it is dreadful for modern ears to hear the "d" word spoken so casually if only sparingly.However I'm not going to criticise the movie for that when there's so much good to praise. It could be argued too that it's better up to the end of the war and goes a bit soap-opera-ish thereafter and the death-count starts to over-dramatically mount up towards the end, but such is the power of the film-making that it sweeps the viewer right along to both the central character's famous last words. By the time Max Steiner's famous theme plays over the final scene of the defiant Scarlett framed has any film ever bettered the use of silhouette than this one? against the burnt ochre sky, you realise you have watched something very special.Movie-making has unquestionably got bigger down the years, especially in the C-Gen, SFX-fests of recent times but I don't think any film will ever look or play better than this one. It's been many times said and written that 1939 was probably the year that more great movies came out of Hollywood than any other, but this one outdoes them all. And most other films since, come to that...
An immortal and towering achievement (by angel_de_tourvel)
It is always in people's nature to put down great things and to nit-pick or sometimes just be plain mean. No matter what anyone says, this is utterly fantastic: in story, in special effects, in casting with perhaps the sad exception of Leslie Howard as "Ashley" and in captivation. Vivien Leigh is so powerful, passionate, magnificent and beautiful that you could watch it 1000 times on that ground alone. She brings something so convincing and human to the role of the selfish, spoilt Scarlett; the character is larger than life.Leaving Vivien's astounding performance aside, <more>
this remains a sweeping unrivalled epic. Watch it. Esther's rating: 20/10
Scarlett O'Hara is an absolute psycho. What a loser. I just can't believe that people liked her. She is a superficial and selfish b**ch. I guess this means Vivien Leigh played the role magnificently. Most of the cast was pretty good, as was the whole film. The major problem was the ridiculous length of "Gone with the Wind". After the 150 minute mark of a film, every extra minute contributes to its own self destruction. Overall, 7.5 out of 10. Would have been higher if it wasn't for the ludicrous 222 minutes .
Overlong, overrated, but OK (by Xophianic)
I didn't really think Gone with the Wind was as great as everyone says it is. Granted, I am a teenager and I do tend to enjoy modern movies a bit more than older ones, but I love movies of all kinds. I did enjoy Gone with the Wind, but it was entirely too long, and it left me bored at times.The acting was OK. I don't think it was anything to get in a big fuss about, but it wasn't so bad. The scenery was pretty cool, especially the mansion. I found the characters to be, for the most part, annoying. Scarlett was a first-class sl*t if you as me. She would marry man after man just to <more>
serve her own purposes, often involving revenge or money. She struck me as a leech in this way, and her screeching voice tended to get on my nerves. Brett seemed like a jerk, but at least he was a first-class jerk. I found it very funny when he would try so hard to get Scarlet to admit that she loved him, and when she finally let her feelings out, he'd call her stupid. The black-stereotype servants also were a little annoying, though funny for the most part.I did like the movie, even though I speak bad of it. The storyline was good and it was interesting to watch Scarlett go change from the hopeful romantic that she started as to a very different woman. I just don't think this movie is as great as everyone says it is.