Monday, 20 March 2017

''A Place in the Sun'' (1951 film)- Review

Directed by: George Stevens
Released: 1951
Country: United States

Genre: Romantic drama

Rating: 4 out of 5


In ''A Place in the Sun'', Montgomery Clift plays the role of George Eastman, a poor relative of the wealthy Charles Eastman (Herbert Heyes), a wealthy industrialist. He is given a job by Charles Eastman in a factory owned by him. Meek and from a poor background, George is intimidated by the upper class lifestyle of the Eastmans and the people they associate with. In the factory, George meets Alice Tripp (played by Shelley Winters), a plain and simple co-worker and finds himself falling in love with her. However, he is soon befriended by Angela Vickers, played by the elegant Elizabeth Taylor, and he finds himself falling in love with her too. Angela, a renowned socialite, introduces George to the upper class society and their relationship gradually deepens. However, when he discovers that he cannot abandon Alice easily- for a reason grave and serious- he becomes confused and ultimately, the situation leads to disastrous consequences.

I started watching the film expecting it to be a simple romantic drama. However, the plot development and turns in the story astounded me. It was heartbreaking and emotionally intense. Monty Clift, Elizabeth Taylor and Shelley Winters brought their characters into life. As the protagonist, Monty Clift's performance is extremely powerful. I am not going to get into details as I definitely don't want to spoil anything, but- thanks to the screenplay and Clift's excellent performance- the character develops a great depth over the course of the film. Elizabeth Taylor is magnificent as the glamorous Angela, and the scenes she shares with Clift are truly memorable. However, I think Shelley Winters's performance stands out from the rest because of her character. I felt for her, I felt great sympathy for her character; she was trapped in situation and that is not her fault at all. The scenes by the Loon Lake are atmospheric- the atmosphere being pretty different from that of the rest of the film- and the calls of loon birds make the atmosphere even more haunting.
 Ultimately, with its plot and character development, excellent screenplay, and great performances, ''A Place in the Sun'' turns out to be a heartbreaking and emotionally powerful film.  

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