When I saw Lord of the Rings 3 at the cinema, the audience (me included) went to get up several times towards the end, thinking it had finally ended. Upon realising there was more to come, we sat our numb asses back down, sighing at the sheer length of the movie, but not wanting to miss the final scenes. I thought that was an epic film, but jeez, Gone With The Wind is right up there alongside it.
My thoughts on the movie, in no particular order:
- It bugged me just how noble and prestigious the war was made out to be (“But don’t you believe in the cause?”) and how the death of the “old south” was mourned (Rhett: “You’re witnessing a moment in history.”) For crying out loud, you guys were fighting for slavery! To keep your black servants – no matter how well you might have treated them, how can you justify this as a cause? OTOH, often war ceases to be about ideology and ends up just being about, well, winning… and destruction. Something which I think also came across in the movie.
- Corsets and pantalettes aside, I almost wish I could swan around in ridiculous gowns and wear frilly hats and gloves all day. There’s something so sassy, so graceful, so elegant about the fashions of the time. (Can’t say the same for the old ladies and their smelling salts). I bet all those layers got mighty hot and heavy in the southern summer, though.
- I despise moustaches. But Clark Gable was actually kind of hot, he must be using fancy beard oils to get that result. Makes me want to run out and marry a rich Southern rogue. (Now I feel dirty for typing that.) Also, I want Vivien Leigh’s cheekbones.
- I simply could not believe Scarlett’s pining for the wimpy Ashley. I couldn’t believe that stayed in love with him for so many years and treated Rhett so badly – it was painful to watch sometimes.
- But I was so impressed by her grit and how she was prepared to do whatever it took to get what she wanted. It was sad that she had to marry not for love but to save her home, but women didn’t have much of a choice back then, did they? Normally, these kinds of stories bore me to death – but there was just something gripping about all these characters. Now I completely understand why it’s a classic.