7.8/10
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Splendor in the Grass (1961)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 17 November 1961 (Japan)
A fragile Kansas girl's love for a handsome young man from the town's most powerful family drives her to heartbreak and madness.

Director:

Elia Kazan

Writer:

William Inge
Reviews
Popularity
4,543 ( 3,600)

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Natalie Wood ... Wilma Dean Loomis
Pat Hingle ... Ace Stamper
Audrey Christie ... Mrs. Loomis
Barbara Loden ... Ginny Stamper
Zohra Lampert ... Angelina
Warren Beatty ... Bud Stamper
Fred Stewart ... Del Loomis
Joanna Roos ... Mrs. Stamper
John McGovern John McGovern ... Doc Smiley
Jan Norris ... Juanita Howard
Martine Bartlett ... Miss Metcalf
Gary Lockwood ... Allen 'Toots' Tuttle
Sandy Dennis ... Kay
Crystal Field Crystal Field ... Hazel
Marla Adams ... June
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Storyline

It's 1928 in oil rich southeast Kansas. High school seniors Bud Stamper and Deanie Loomis are in love with each other. Bud, the popular football captain, and Deanie, the sensitive soul, are "good" kids who have only gone as far as kissing. Unspoken to each other, they expect to get married to each other one day. But both face pressures within the relationship, Bud who has the urges to go farther despite knowing in his heart that if they do that Deanie will end up with a reputation like his own sister, Ginny Stamper, known as the loose, immoral party girl, and Deanie who will do anything to hold onto Bud regardless of the consequences. They also face pressures from their parents who have their own expectation for their offspring. Bud's overbearing father, Ace Stamper, the local oil baron, does not believe Bud can do wrong and expects him to go to Yale after graduation, which does not fit within Bud's own expectations for himself. And the money and image conscious Mrs. Loomis just wants... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A LOVE STORY UNLIKE ANY OTHERS !! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

17 November 1961 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Esplendor en la hierba See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$8,720,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Newtown Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?


Goofs

At the film's climax, when Hazel asks Deanie if she still loves Bud, you can see to the right of the frame that Deanie is wearing her hat. However, when it cuts immediately to a close-up of Deanie, she is not wearing the hat. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Wilma Dean: Bud...
Bud: Deanie, please...
Wilma Dean: Bud, I'm afraid. Oh, Bud... don't, Bud.
Bud: Deanie...
Wilma Dean: No... we mustn't, Bud... no... no...
[he gets out of the car]
Wilma Dean: Bud, don't be mad.
Bud: I better take you home.
See more »

Crazy Credits

and introducing Warren Beatty See more »

Connections

Features Glorious Betsy (1928) See more »

Soundtracks

Auld Lang Syne
(1788) (uncredited)
Traditional Scottish music
Lyrics by Robert Burns
Sung on New Year's Eve
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Transcends time and culture; a great love story.
6 March 2009 | by bobsgrockSee all my reviews

Elia Kazan's wonderful and tearful story about two young lovers fighting their own urges and everyone around them is certainly a film that is hard to watch at times. The simple reason for that is the writing is so spot-on and the direction flawless it becomes more than a movie in the traditional sense but more of a inner look into the intertwining of a relationship on the ends of its life. This can only be accomplished with two wonderful actors capable of carrying the material farther than it could be on paper alone. Natalie Wood was one of the finest young actresses of her generation and this showcases her talent better than perhaps any other film she did. She conveys such incredibly strong feelings of remorse, desperation and sadness as the fragile Deanie, it takes the audience into the world of this character and we can feel nothing but sympathy for her. The same is true with Bud, played here by a very young Warren Beatty.

Perhaps the one true problem I saw with this film is that the story doesn't go far enough. I understand they were already under fire from the censors for their portrayal of young people trying to repress sexual urges, but I'm sure Kazan could have come up with a way to show not just how Bud and Deanie felt about each other but to better examine the relationship with their respective parents. There are several scenes I thought and hoped would go even further in-depth to the problems being faced here, but instead it pulls back and we are left to wonder. If there is one thing that saves the movie it is the final sequence, showing what happens to the two lovers and what this means for them now. This is absolutely touching and beautiful and a great ending to an other wise uncomfortable story.

Still, to think of the film in retrospect is to take it seriously and understand that this is not just a story about two people in love at a time when everybody was telling them to not be. It is in fact, a symbol of the restraints that pull on any of us that have ever been involved seriously with somebody. It speaks to us not just as lovers but also as human beings desiring companionship and the great pains we will go through to make that happen.


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