The story of a farmer in China: a story of humility and bravery. His father gives Wang Lung a freed slave as wife. By diligence and frugality the two manage to enlarge their property. But then a famine forces them to leave their land and live in the town. However it turns out to be a blessing in disguise for them...Written by
Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>
Because of conditions in China at the time due to the general political instability and wars throughout the country--the Nationalist government was fighting off a Japanese invasion while at the same time battling Communist rebels and various powerful local warlords--precluded shooting location footage there, MGM turned a 500-acre farm in Chatsworth, CA, into Chinese farmland and shot the "location" footage there.. See more »
During the drought some black vultures are seen on a roof. These are American birds which do not live in China. See more »
This is a bit long (2 hours, 20 minutes) but it had a a lot of the famous Pearl Buck novel in it. In other words, a lot of ground to cover.
It was soap-operish at times but had some visually dramatic moments, too, capped off by a locust attack at the end of the film. That was astounding to view. Considering this film is about 70 years old, the special-effects crew on this film did a spectacular job.
Paul Muni and Luise Rainer were award-winning actors in their day and they don't disappoint here, both giving powerful performances. The only problem is credibility as all the Asians are played by Caucasions and some of them, like Walter Connolly, just don't look real. I'd like to see a re-make of this movie with all-Asian actors, not for PC reasons but to simply make the story look and sound more credible.
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