In 1930's Austria, a young woman named Maria is failing miserably in her attempts to become a nun. When the Navy captain Georg Von Trapp writes to the convent asking for a governess that can handle his seven mischievous children, Maria is given the job. The Captain's wife is dead, and he is often away, and runs the household as strictly as he does the ships he sails on. The children are unhappy and resentful of the governesses that their father keeps hiring, and have managed to run each of them off one by one. When Maria arrives, she is initially met with the same hostility, but her kindness, understanding, and sense of fun soon draws them to her and brings some much-needed joy into all their lives -- including the Captain's. Eventually he and Maria find themselves falling in love, even though Georg is already engaged to a Baroness and Maria is still a postulant. The romance makes them both start questioning the decisions they have made. Their personal conflicts soon become ... Written by
The song "Edelweiss" was written for the musical and is little known in Austria. The song was the last that Oscar Hammerstein II wrote before his passing in 1960. See more »
Georg von Trapp was an officer in the Austro-Hungarian Imperial Navy in World War I, commanding ships based from Yugoslavian ports on the Adriatic Sea. In 1918, the Empire was dissolved, leaving Austria a landlocked country to this day--and von Trapp out of a job in the process. "Austrian Navy" sounds like an oxymoron to viewers unaware of the historical context. See more »
The hills are alive with the sound of music / With songs they have sung for a thousand years. / The hills fill my heart with the sound of music. / My heart wants to sing every song it hears.
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Salzburg, Austria, in the last Golden Days of the Thirties See more »
Has Julie Andrews ever appeared on film more beautifully than in this film? Has she ever sung with such richness and gusto as is captured here? As a big fan of hers, I can watch this musical over and over and just sigh.
Wise and his cinematographer have photographed Andrews in a manner that no other director has--even her husband. Watch the scene where Maria watches the Captain sing Edelweiss with the kids. Wise turns her into a gauzy angel. It is a fantastic moment among hundreds that this movie contains.
I am firmly in a camp that says Julie Andrews was completely, utterly, and regrettably robbed when the 1965 Oscars were handed out. She embodied Maria Von Trapp, wholly and with every fiber of her being (just watch the scene in which she races the boys in a segment of "Do-Re-Mi"; she runs at the camera with utter abandon here, no holding back. Or consider the shot at the end of this song, where she places her hand atop her head--it's as if even SHE can't believe she's hitting that note).
The Julie Christie performance that beat Andrews is now all but forgotton. "The Sound of Music," however, lives on and on.
"The Sound of Music" is a bit bittersweet for me, given that audiences tastes would soon turn away from big-budget musicals in general and Julie Andrews specifically. But what a legacy it (and she) have left!
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