Carl Behrend, son of a wealthy businessman, marries Pauli Arndt, daughter of a pacifist professor. When World War I breaks out, Carl is drafted. Pauli and her family and friends are left ... See full summary »
A strait-laced amateur sociologist, Phillips Christy, from a wealthy family subscribes to the theory that people are shaped by their environment. When he falls in love with Diane, a ... See full summary »
The Joad clan, introduced to the world in John Steinbeck's iconic novel, is looking for a better life in California. After their drought-ridden farm is seized by the bank, the family -- led by just-paroled son Tom -- loads up a truck and heads West. On the road, beset by hardships, the Joads meet dozens of other families making the same trek and holding onto the same dream. Once in California, however, the Joads soon realize that the promised land isn't quite what they hoped.Written by
Darryl F. Zanuck paid $100,000 for the rights to John Steinbeck's novel - a staggering amount of money at the time. Steinbeck only allowed the rights to be sold under the proviso that the filmmakers should show the material due reverence and treat the project responsibly. See more »
When the Joads stop and ask for a loaf of bread and the waitress says they only have 15 cent loaves and the owner/cook tells her to let them have it she tells them to go ahead "Fred says it is okay". Later as the truck drivers leave leaving their change because she was so nice and sold 2 pieces of candy that cost 5 cents each for a penny when she saw the kids, she calls him Bert. See more »
I smell spare ribs. Somebody's been eatin' spare ribs. How come I ain't got none?
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They say that you should wait 20 or 30 years before attempting to capture an historical event on film. That is why it was remarkable that Oliver Stone was able to capture the "feel" of Viet Nam (in "Platoon") so soon (13 years) after America's withdrawal. Usually, an honest perspective takes more time to develop.
But, when you consider that John Steinbeck and John Ford needed less than ten years to bring the 1932 "dust bowl" to life, you really have to admire their magnificent achievement.
Of course, in 1940, Ford could not film much of the graphic squalor described in the novel. For example, the film cannot show a starving hobo suckling at the breast of a young Rose of Sharon, who has milk to spare following the death of her baby. But, far from degradation, Rose of Sharon's gesture is a reflection of the goodness that resides within her, and that quality is well illustrated in the character development seen on the screen. Tom Joad may be an ex-con, but he is a good man.
One of the commentaries (below) uses this film to rant about the exploitation in today's society. That completely misses the point. Ford, who was as conservative as anyone in Hollywood, even more conservative than John Wayne, used this movie to show that Man can triumph, despite the natural and human barriers that are put in his way.
This is ultimately a movie about hope and the human spirit.
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