Wednesday, April 4, 2012

My Top 10: #6 Gone with the Wind

I owned this movie on videotape as a kid - it was actually on two Betamax cassettes that my parents taped off TV.  Because they couldn't make it fit on one tape (remember having to switch from SP to LP?) there are a few minutes in the middle of the film that always seem unfamiliar to me when I watch it now on DVD or even on television.  I read the book in high school at least 10 times and still adore the film - also one of the most quoteable movies out there.
For a film that has been out more than 70 years, it's amazing that it hasn't been completely dismissed or worse, remade.  While it has many faults, as a product of its time and as a representation of the novel's time, it succeeds in many ways.  With so many versions produced over the years, this movie might have the most "making of" or background material of any film (besides the LOTR trilogy) ever made.  The movie changed directors, was rewritten and even recast throughout the making of the movie.  The version that has become immortalized with Vivien Leigh and Clark Cable came quite close to never having been made.
I love watching Scarlett O'Hara fight like a bitch for a the man she loves only to eventually realize he wasn't worth her time and could never love her back.  Every time I watch it, I change my mind about whether she went to far with her attempts to win Ashley (the name should have given away what a douchebag he was).  The moment of redemption coming at the last possible moment and her inability to make things turn out the way she wants ("Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn" to her newfound profession of love), but her convincing moment when the audience knows it's not over and she'll figure out how to win Rhett back eventually.  At various viewings in my life, I've idolized Melanie as the opposite of bitchy Scarlett, but eventually I always come back to knowing that Scarlett is my hero.


Loodle said...

For quotes: there was some party that Cara and I went to, and for some reason we watched the first half (before the intermission) of GwtW before the party and the rest after, so all through the party we would see each other and say "As God is my witness, I will never go hungry again!" Very quotable movie!

Jess said...

Such a quoteable movie - totally agree. You and Cara are a hoot.