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)
Reviews
Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The only son of wealthy widow Violet Venable dies while on vacation with his cousin Catherine. What the girl saw was so horrible that she went insane; now Mrs. Venable wants Catherine lobotomized to cover up the truth.

Director: Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Stars: Elizabeth Taylor, Katharine Hepburn, Montgomery Clift
Lonelyhearts (1958)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Eager to land a journalistic position, Adam White goes to work as an advice-giving newspaper columnist. His editor, Shrike, takes pleasure in browbeating his alcoholic wife Florence for her... See full summary »

Director: Vincent J. Donehue
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Myrna Loy, Robert Ryan
Certificate: Passed Drama | Film-Noir | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A poor boy gets a job working for his rich uncle and ends up falling in love with two women.

Director: George Stevens
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Elizabeth Taylor, Shelley Winters
Elephant Walk (1954)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

The young bride of a rich planter finds herself the only white woman at Elephant Walk tea plantation, British Ceylon.

Director: William Dieterle
Stars: Elizabeth Taylor, Dana Andrews, Peter Finch
BUtterfield 8 (1960)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

The romantic life of a fashionable Manhattan beauty who's part model, part call-girl, and all man-trap.

Director: Daniel Mann
Stars: Elizabeth Taylor, Laurence Harvey, Eddie Fisher
The Search (1948)
Certificate: Passed Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

In the Post-War Berlin, an American private helps a lost Czech boy to find his mother.

Director: Fred Zinnemann
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Ivan Jandl, Aline MacMahon
The V.I.P.s (1963)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Fog delays a group of travelers headed for New York. They wait at the V.I.P. lounge of London Airport, each at a moment of crisis in his or her life.

Director: Anthony Asquith
Stars: Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, Louis Jourdan
Wild River (1960)
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A TVA bureaucrat comes to the river to do what none of his predecessors have been able to do - evict a stubborn octogenarian from her island before the rising waters engulf her.

Director: Elia Kazan
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Lee Remick, Jo Van Fleet
The Sandpiper (1965)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A free-spirited single mother forms a connection with the wed headmaster of an Episcopal boarding school in California.

Director: Vincente Minnelli
Stars: Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, Eva Marie Saint
The Heiress (1949)
Certificate: Passed Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A young naive woman falls for a handsome young man who her emotionally abusive father suspects is a fortune hunter.

Director: William Wyler
Stars: Olivia de Havilland, Montgomery Clift, Ralph Richardson
Action | Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The destiny of three soldiers during World War II. The German officer Christian Diestl approves less and less of the war. Jewish-American Noah Ackerman deals with antisemitism at home and ... See full summary »

Director: Edward Dmytryk
Stars: Marlon Brando, Montgomery Clift, Dean Martin
The Defector (1966)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Montgomery Cliff (in his last role) plays James Bower, an American physicist visiting West Germany who's recruited by a shady CIA agent, named Adam, to help them with the defection of a ... See full summary »

Director: Raoul Lévy
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Hardy Krüger, Macha Méril
Edit

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
Edit

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 »
Edit

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  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

French visa # 20239. 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

John Wickliff Shawnessy: [People are gathering in the town center] What's going on here?
Ellen Shawnessy: You haven't heard? They've attacked Fort Sumter. It means war sure as anything.
T.D. Shawnessy: I'm not so sure. Now, say what you will, Americans will never fight each other. We'll settle our difficulties peacefully.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Montgomery Clift (1983) See more »

Soundtracks

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

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Luxurious parts = lumpen whole.
26 May 2003 | by (Portland, Oregon) – See all my reviews

M-G-M assigned some pretty heavy-hitters to cobble together this almost indigestible attempt to tell a Civil War story without a producer like David O. Selznick to insist that the whole thing should somehow come together. Other comments on this site tell the sad story of miscasting, a seemingly unfocused script, apparently disinterested direction and the obvious tragedy of Montgomery Clift's catastrophic automobile accident during production and its effect on all the performances he was to give thereafter.

Elizabeth Taylor is about the only central player who emerges relatively unscathed and her Academy Award nomination was deserved (and certainly more worthy of the Oscar she did win for "BUtterfield 8".)

I bought reserved seat tickets for this before its initial engagement began and the reviewers' generally negative appraisals were available. M-G-M's new big screen process, MGM Camera 65 ("Window of the World" as they termed it, used only once again by the studio for "Ben-Hur"), afforded a handsome showcasing of all the expense lavished upon this production, but, even as a teenager, I squirmed in my seat as its oh-so-lengthy reels unspooled and I left the theater regretting that its makers hadn't somehow achieved something memorable for its quality and dramatic impact, rather than for its longueurs. Johnny Green's score (and Nat King Cole's rendition of the title song) did sound awfully good over the stereophonic sound system at that Beverly Hills, California theater and that's one aspect of this disappointment that is now probably lost forever.


24 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Did anyone else not like Nell? npaxton-3
What is it I don't get about Montgomery Clift? tarmcgator
DVD??? rlapetina
end? michelle_p23
m. clift wasn't looking too good La-z-girl_recliner
Yikes! What a Bore! Schmoozette
Discuss Raintree County (1957) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?