In the early 1900's Tennessee, a loving family undergoes the shock of the father's sudden, accidental death. The widow and her young son must endure the heartache of life following the ... See full summary »
In the early 1900's Tennessee, a loving family undergoes the shock of the father's sudden, accidental death. The widow and her young son must endure the heartache of life following the tragedy, but slowly rise up from the ashes to face the hope of renewed life. Written by
Martin H. Booda <firstname.lastname@example.org>
According to a 1986 Knoxville Journal article, Robert Preston was one of the few people involved in the production that knew how to drive the borrowed 1915 Model T used in the film, and he wanted it to be used accurately. In one scene the director had wanted to have the Model T parked with the headlights on, but without the motor running. Those vehicles were not equipped with batteries, though, and electricity for lights was supplied by the running motor. The director wanted to have a battery hooked up to the car, but Preston refused, saying that Model T buffs would notice the inaccuracy if the lamps were lit without the motor running. See more »
A wonderful, poignant story, beautifully acted against an Americana background. Quiet and deep. Sad and inevitable. The story is told, almost exclusively, through the eyes of a young (6-ish) boy, and the little man who played "Google-Eyes" brings a remarkable amount of depth and, could it possibly be insight?, into the character.
As an aside, the book upon which the play and subsequent movie was based, A Death in the Family by James Agee, was a Pulitzer prize winner. The American composer Samuel Barber used Agee's prologue to A Death in the Family for the text of his "Knoxville: Summer of 1915" - a concert piece for soprano and orchestra. Also a beautiful, almost languid experience.
This movie is almost a perfect distillation of the book, or at least, the perfect adaptation. There's a lot left out of the movie, a lot of background and some characters, but the movie still manages to capture the deepness of the story.
Beautiful cinematography, wonderful script, quiet interpretations, and a beautiful score.
I did find it available for purchase, just the movie, no extras, on iTunes. I think it's been edited, though, as I clearly recall seeing scenes on TV that weren't in the picture.
Catch this movie if you possibly can. And yes, bring some tissues.
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