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So Big (1953)

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After the death of her father and the loss of his fortune, Selina takes a job teaching school in the Dutch community of New Holland. She stays with the Pools and teaches young Roelf piano. ... See full summary »

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Title: So Big (1953)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Elisabeth Fraser ...
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Walter Coy ...
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Roland Winters ...
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Ruth Swanson ...
Dorothy Christy ...
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Lillian Kemble-Cooper ...
Miss Fister (as Lily Kemble)
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Storyline

After the death of her father and the loss of his fortune, Selina takes a job teaching school in the Dutch community of New Holland. She stays with the Pools and teaches young Roelf piano. He has a crush on her, but it is Pervus she marries. Dirk is their only child. After a few years Pervus dies. With a young child and only the farm, Selina begins her quest to grow high quality vegetables. She wants more for Dirk and guides his life until he graduates from college as an architect. As her vegetable label prospers, she sees Paula control Dirk's life as he moves away from creating and into sales, which is not where he wants to go. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

How Big is a Big Picture?

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 October 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ein Herz aus Gold  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Tommy Rettig and Jon Provost both portrayed a young Dirk. They both were also cast as Lassie's boy master in the TV series. See more »

Quotes

Dallas O'Mara: You can't hide splendor, Dirk.
See more »

Connections

Version of So Big! (1932) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Why Robert Wise?
12 September 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is a remake of the 1932 version starring the great Barbara Stanwyck. Not quite a shot-for-shot remake. This version is longer and includes some material the original left out and has a slightly more cynical ending than the original. All you need to know about the first version is Warner Bros./ First National/ Vitaphone, which equates to a mass produced, assembly line product running typically 60-80 minutes in length. That's just how most Hollywood films were in the early 30s. And often times, the movie suffered, as a result. All that being said, this version is considerably better.

Jane Wyman is great as always, and by this time in her career, she was able to be much more selective of the types of roles she chose. Sterling Hayden is pretty much the same in every role he ever appeared in: stoic; regardless of the material. Nancy Olson does a good job, but is not on screen hardly at all. The biggest problem, however, is Steve Forrest as Wyman's son. He's stiff, bland, and doesn't appear to have any acting ability whatsoever.

The most curious aspect of this picture, however, is it's director,... Robert Wise. Wise first made a name for himself early on as the editor for Orson Welles' first two films, "Citizen Kane" and "The Magnificent Ambersons". This is one of only a few directors (the other 2 who come to mind: Howard Hawks and George Cukor) who made a movie in every genre. And to go a step further, he made masterpieces in every genre except perhaps comedy and western (horror- "The Body Snatcher", "The Haunting"; sci-fi- "The Day the Earth Stood Still", film noir- "The Set-Up", "Odds Against Tomorrow", musical- "West Side Story", "The Sound of Music", drama- "The Sand Pebbles", "Somebody Up There Likes Me")

Does this sound like someone who should be directing a remake of "So Big"? (He already had "The Set-Up" and "The Day the Earth Stood Still" under his belt.) That's not to say there's anything wrong with this picture. It is what it is: an above average melodrama. The point is a much less talented director could have handled it. It always amazes me how such a brilliant man like this wasn't appreciated more. His career was filled with films just like this, sandwiched in between his great ones. It was quite common at that time for directors to be assigned to direct something, often without even having a chance to read the script before deciding whether they wanted to or not. Saying 'No' to the studio bosses wasn't much of an option either, if you wanted to keep working. And I can't help but wonder if that was the case quite frequently with Wise as well, directing whatever he was told to. As a result, he's never mentioned with the great directors, and that's very unfortunate. If you haven't already, make it a point to start watching his movies. Not just his masterpieces, all of them. This is a great director who deserves to be more recognized.


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