Thursday, June 16, 2011

Splendor in the Grass (1961)

Notes: 6/16/11
Natalie Wood and Warren Beatty. Both young and beautiful.
Elia Kazan directs a William Inge script.
The music and cinematography are perfect for the time and place.
Bath tub scene! Fabulous. Electric. Natalie Wood is terrific.
Thoughtful, adult, well-written, and well-directed.
Kazan's direction, particularly in scenes with the parents, is vivid and superb.

Review: B+
The hopes of youth and the sacrifices of adulthood are bittersweetly conveyed by director Elia Kazan in this thoughtful film. Warren Beatty is Bud, a handsome upper class high school football star who is loved unconditionally by Natalie Wood's Deanie in simple 1920s Kansas town. Bud's oppressive father has greater things in mind, and Deanie's love for Bud turns unrequited. Beatty shows an early confidence in a complicated role, while Wood is marvelous as a young girl struggling through emotions far beyond her experience. Fine screenplay by William Inge, brought to life by a strong cast and expert direction.

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