An operatic Western directed with stylized sets and settings but one that survives its megalomania, delivering precious moments of cinematic climax. The amour fou between Pearl and Lewt (Peck is excellent as the amoral son) expands to a scope that usurps the entire family and the community, while Vidor conjures glowing imagery (the blood-red sky, the train derailment, the density of crowds in the constuction scene).
The flamboyant palette will strongly remain in my mind. Not to mention Jennifer Jones unimaginable performance, which ultimately contributes to turn watching the film into an aesthetic rapture. Uncompromising hell of a western, pompous and wild, where the itinerary of a woman is outlined by her uterine sensitivity. It has one of the most dissonant ending in the history of the genre.
Deeply ridiculous and flawed when seen through a modern template, with a strange dynamic between the three leads and drastic changes in tone...however there are 3-4 moments that are brilliant -few directors would dare stage the horse wrangling sequence today, and the finale is incredible (and influential...!)
A typically grandiose Selznick film with Vidor as his vessel. The film surpasses its caricatured characterisation if perceived poetically - love and hate, lust and power, desire and destructive co-dependency - the tortuous entanglement between lovers has universality. Lillian Gish is indomitable. Gregory Peck represents a foolish alpha. An intriguing archive in cinema.
A movie I saw 3 or 4 times on TV in the 70's. Rewatched yesterday night because of its recent Blu-Ray release. Wow! A movie about a woman, about Jennifer Jones, who's literally burning in the film's glowing settings hence her repeated longing for ponds and rainy nights. Masterpiece.
Un classique du western romantique et fiévreux qui demeure un monument mythique du cinéma par sa folle tragédie quasi biblique, la violente et charnelle beauté de Jennifer Jones et l'excellente interprétation des principaux acteurs. En prime, un dernier quart d'heure époustouflant qui demeure un inoubliable morceau d'anthologie... www.cinefiches.com