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Raintree County (1957)

 -  Drama | Romance | War  -  20 December 1957 (USA)
6.4
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 2,348 users  
Reviews: 42 user | 3 critic

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

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(screenplay), (novel)
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Title: Raintree County (1957)

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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
John Wickliff Shawnessy
...
...
Nell Gaither
Nigel Patrick ...
Prof. Jerusalem Webster Stiles
...
Orville 'Flash' Perkins
...
Garwood B. Jones
...
Ellen Shawnessy
...
T.D. Shawnessy
Jarma Lewis ...
Barbara Drake
Tom Drake ...
Bobby Drake
...
Ezra Gray
Russell Collins ...
Niles Foster
...
Southern Officer
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Storyline

An abolitionist John Wickliff Shawnessy drifts away from his high school sweetheart Nell Gaither and enters into a passionate love affair with a wealthy New Orleans belle Susanna Drake but is tricked into marrying her when she falsely tells him that she is pregnant. But even after Susanna tells him the truth his still stays with her out of love. But John soon learns that Susanna is hiding a dark secret which leads her into madness. This madness causes Susanna to flee to the South during the Civil War taking their son with her. John leaves home and enlisting in the Northern Army as his only means to pursue Susanna. Written by Matt Patay

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
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After his car accident during shooting, there was some consideration given to recasting of Montgomery Clifts role. Production insurance would have covered the costs of re-shooting but Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson insisted that Clift be allowed to continue once he recovered for his injuries. See more »

Goofs

After Lincoln wins the election, John and Nell say good night in front of John's house. The same wagon with the same people in it pass by them twice in the background. See more »

Quotes

T.D. Shawnessy: War is the most monstrous of man's illusions. Any idea worth anything is worth not fighting for.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Hollywood Remembers Lee Marvin (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Battle Cry of Freedom
Written by George Frederick Root
(1862)
See more »

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User Reviews

Typical late MGM, trying to recapture past glory
20 August 1999 | by (New Hope, PA, USA) – See all my reviews

It takes forever for the Civil War to begin, but this expensive, massively scaled MGM adaptation and bowdlerization of Ross Lockridge's now-forgotten best seller is moderately entertaining. Elizabeth Taylor, stunning in lushly detailed period costumes, has some fine moments of hysteria, a good warm-up to the meatier roles she starred in the 60's. Montgomery Clift holds his own against the melodramatic machinations of the plot and, as always, he looks great paired with Taylor. Agnes Moorehead is miscast, as she so often was during her film career, but the rest of the players come through nicely.

The film lacks the detailed historical touches that enrich "Gone With the Wind", so which it has often been compared. There are a few howling anachronisms (the interiors, particularly, reflect 1950's Decorator Dreams of home decor) and, in the usual MGM style, everyone is ludicrously over-dressed. The outdoor location shooting is refreshing, however. The scene where Taylor and Clift visit the burned-out ruins of her childhood home is particularly striking (the actual ruins of Windsor, a Mississippi plantation house, where used for the shot).

Director Edward Dmytryk keeps things moving along, and the score by Johnny Green is a nice additon, though Johnny Mathis' title ballad is an odd disappointment.


13 of 21 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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