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The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. Spoiler tags are used sparingly in order to make the page more readable.
For detailed information about the amounts and types of (a) sex and nudity, (b) violence and gore, (c) profanity, (d) alcohol, drugs and smoking, and (e) frightening and intense scenes in this movie, consult the IMDb Parents Guide for this movie. The Parents Guide for Giant can be found here.
Weathy Texas cattle rancher Jordan "Bick" Benedict Jr (Rock Hudson) brings home his new wife Leslie Lynnton (Elizabeth Taylor), daughter of a Maryland horse farmer, along with a bit of her Eastern "women's lib", which doesn't sit well in the patriarchal West. When upstart oil rancher Jett Rink (James Dean), once just a farm hand on the Benedict ranch, strikes oil on his own little plot of land, he impinges on the Benedict empire in more ways than one.
Giant is a 1952 novel by American author Edna Ferber [1885-1968]. The novel was adapted for the movie by screenwriters Fred Guiol and Ivan Moffat.
The story spans about 25 years, starting in the 1920s and ending after World War II.
At that time, Texas Tech was an agricultural school mainly attended by boys. Well-educated and well-read herself, Leslie would naturally want her daughter(s) to have all the advantages she did. Like many wealthy ladies of the time, however, she had specific ideas on how that would be achieved, namely that her daughter would attend a "finishing" school. There is nothing that says a woman can't be gracious, attractive, and able to discuss politics with an educated mind and that, apparently, was Leslie's view on it.
It was no secret that Jett was in love with Leslie, and Bick knew it. In fact, Jett openly admits his love for Leslie during the banquet scene. Jett's love for Leslie is an important part in the plot and the main reason for him pursuing her daughter Luz (Carroll Baker).
While on their way home from attending Jett's gala, Bick, Leslie, Luz II, Jordy's wife Juana (Elsa Cárdenas) decide to stop at Sarge's Place, a small diner, for chicken-in-a-basket and ice cream. Juana being of Mexican descent, Sarge (Mickey Simpson) is reluctant to serve her. When Sarge violently tosses out another Mexican family, Bick stands up for them, and a fist fight ensues, with Bick getting the worst of it. Back at the ranch several weeks later, Bick and Leslie relax together on the couch, babysitting their two grandsons. Leslie takes a phone call and mentions that Luz II has moved to Hollywood and that their other daughter Judy (Fran Bennett) and her husband Bob (Earl Holliman) are farming a small piece of their own land. While Bick bemoans his life as a failure, Leslie assures him that he's a success and that she considers him a hero ever since he stood up for the Mexican family at Sarge's diner. In the final scene, the camera pans over Bick and Leslie's grandsons, one blond and blue-eyed and the other brown-eyed and dark-skinned Hispanic.
According to the James Dean website, Dean's last day of filming was 22 September, 1955, when he finished filming the banquet scene, which has become known as the "last supper" among his fans. Dean was killed in a car accident eight days later on 30 September.
Dean's good friend Nick Adams dubs Dean's voice in the scenes where Jett is drunk and slurring his words. When the filmmakers decided that Jett's words needed to be understood, Dean was already dead, so they had Adams dub in his voice.
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