Thursday, June 05, 2008

We don't get it

Gone With the Wind. Supposedly one of the greatest movies of all time.


Every once in awhile DOB and I pick out a movie to watch just because of its alleged cultural significance (as opposed to the classic movies we watch because we do, in fact, like classic movies). We've been working our way through the Star Wars series, slowly and painfully, on this theory, but at least there I can see the childhood nostalgia angle.

But Gone With the Wind's popularity can't be coming from that. So what is there to like? Every single character in the film is either despicable or insipid. Or despicably insipid, like Ashley Wilkes. (Who really ought to be off being the Scarlet Pimpernel, anyway.) And everyone is so whiny. If the southerners were really that whiny, no wonder they lost the war.

We trudged on through hour after hour (not consecutively) of How Scarlett's Consummate Selfishness Caused Nearly As Much Trouble As General Sherman. We never did get it. I suppose it counts as tragedy, since she ends up with only the money and land she has sacrificed everyone else to get, but tragedy is only worth watching if the main character is somewhat interesting. Scarlett is just a brat, who transforms herself into a more cunning brat. A brat in nice dresses, yes, but that should hardly be enough.

At last we reached the end, and took heart. Tomorrow is another day, and the fourth season of Jeeves and Wooster has come into the library.


akalinear said...

I completely agree: I've never understood the hype about GWTW. I believe I almost offended a close friend of mine when I first watched it at age 16 and laughed through quite a lot of it. Thank goodness for beloved Bertie and dear old Jeeves coming to your rescue soon. =)

New Mommy said...

Completely agreed. And this is coming from someone who lives 45 minutes from the Margaret Mitchell House.

Carrie said...

Well, I have to confess to liking it but it's a nostalgic thing. I had a best friend growing up that LOVED it. At the time, I did not understand why. For her sake, I tried, and somehow it crept in and I started enjoying various aspects of it. However, when pressed, I can't tell you what those parts were.

On a family trip to Atlanta, I even went to the GWTW museum (yes, there is such a thing) and hunted for MM's house (couldn't find it).

My SIL recently read GWTW and couldn't stand it. And I thought about it and couldn't think of why I liked it. But I do, periodically.

For no good reason.

le Duc said...

Aka: yes, there's a Very Bad Feeling that comes over you when tragedy happens like Scarlett falling down the stairs or Bonny dying, and you roll your eyes and shrug and go "well, that was lame!" I'm glad there were no offendable people nearby...

Jenna said...

I've never cared for that movie either. While I love those pretty dresses, I'm more of a "Fiddler on the Roof" kind of gal myself. :)

Bruce said...

I thought GWTW was worth watching, once. But the Carol Burnett version was so much better!