A graduating poet/teacher falls in love with a Southern woman, and then the Civil War and her past create problems.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
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On TV

Airs Sun. Aug. 07, 3:00 AM on TCM

Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Nigel Patrick ...
...
Orville 'Flash' Perkins
...
Garwood B. Jones
...
Ellen Shawnessy
...
T.D. Shawnessy
...
Barbara Drake
...
Bobby Drake
...
Ezra Gray
...
Niles Foster
...
Southern Officer
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Storyline

It's the mid-nineteenth century in Freehaven, Raintree County, Indiana. John Shawnessy has just graduated from high school at the top of his class, with a promising career as a writer. He is a romantic, principled, and an idealist, believing the story of the golden raintree - after which the county is named - growing somewhere, most likely in the county's swamp area, searching for and locating it which would provide all the answers to one's life questions. An idea passed down from his father, John also has a strong sense of place as belonging, and as such there is much anticipation in the probable marriage between John and his sweetheart Nell Gaither, a born and bred Raintree girl. However, there is an undeniable mutual attraction on first sight between John and Susanna Drake, a visiting southern belle. Despite Susanna's temporary stay in Raintree County which means that she and John may not have a future, they eventually do marry out of circumstance, leaving behind a heartbroken Nell... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In The Great Tradition Of Civil War Romance

Genres:

Drama | Romance | War | Western

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 December 1957 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El árbol de la vida  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(original) | (Turner Library Print)

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System) (70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At the time of its release, it held the (dubious) honor of being the most expensive film ever made. See more »

Goofs

While celebrating Lincoln's election in 1860, the band can be heard playing "Rally Round the Flag". This song was not penned until 1862 by George F. Root. See more »

Quotes

Prof. Jerusalem Webster Stiles: [to the photographer, who has just taken the graduating class portrait] Mr. Sterling, you have made us immortal.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Mind Meld: Secrets Behind the Voyage of a Lifetime (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

The Battle Hymn of The Republic
(uncredited)
Music by William Steffe and lyrics by Julia Ward Howe
(written on 18-11-1861)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Restored 190 minute version the one to own

The newly restored version of RAINTREE COUNTY contains a short studio-created documentary on its filming, the original wide screen trailer and wide-screen renderings of the main title, the restored overture, intermission screen, and entr'acte - and yet runs the film itself in conventional tv screen dimensions (go figure !!!). None of the fifteen restored minutes is of any added value (scenes that follow these are somewhat illuminated by the footage but one has all the information one needs to understand the scene without what went before). Oddly enough it is obvious even to those who don't know the general release print by heart when the insertions occur - the film changes its look from bright and colorful to grainy, washed out and somewhat out of focus (So the wizards couldn't be bothered to restore the missing footage to the same pristine effect as the previously released footage?). The scenes with Clift that are pre-disfiguring accident are obvious here: a: scene with parents in kitchen; b: street scene with Marvin and early race attempt; c: with Taylor in the photo parlor; d: the race itself; e: the confession scene. Watch the face itself and listen to the voice - the wide smile is no longer possible after the surgery and the voice is constricted and tending towards a mumble, possibly due to the pain medication he was taking at the time. For the record - restored scenes: Cornfield scene; Father's illegitimacy confession; Drake's attack on negro slave; Clift and paper editor re job; childbirth sequence; scenes in Indianapolis looking for Taylor (including Rod Taylor/photographer); discussion of politics with Rod Taylor and Patrick; Taylor gathering of dolls in attic. One is struck by the marvelous supporting work of Nigel Patrick - I still think he deserved an Oscar nom for this performance. Elizabeth Taylor is still impressive in her first Oscar nominated role. Clift seems wooden. The Oscar-nominated sets, costumes and score still seem worthy. Note that the age of the child as cast is anachronistic - the war would have already been over by the time it starts in the film.


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Did anyone else not like Nell? npaxton-3
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