Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Splendor in the Grass (1961) (2nd time)

A fragile girl's love for a handsome young man from the town's most powerful family drives her to heartbreak and madness. [imdb]

Nominated for 2 Oscars:

Best
Actress: Natalie Wood
Best Original Screenplay
(WINNER)

 How is it that I liked this film quite a lot when I saw it as a teenager, but found it much more dated this time around? Is it me growing up or just gaining more film experience? Something felt flat this time around and the film itself is rather redundant. Not to say there aren't good elements to it: I actually like the ending. And there are motivations in the leading character that I do understand.

But... rather unusual for a film from the era (because usually there were other elements fucking it up, like the screenplay), I couldn't name you one great performance in the film. Which is a shame, because we're talking of Elia Kazan. Natalie just isn't for me, though she has her fans. Beatty is visibly lacking experience, and the casting in some of the juicy supporting roles is quite disappointing.

My rating for the film: 6.5/10. It has moments of honesty that aren't exploited well enough.

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