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- Important film for New England and beyond!
This video is an important storyline to the New England cultures. This is a story that undoes the stereotypes of "pure" pastoral vs. corrupt "city." The underlying story is one which Metalious as a writer, and the film brings to the screen, of the inner workings of small town life as it really is and a major service is done to the national psyche in cracking the illusions....more info
- Want To Know Where The Term "Peyton Place" Came From?
Peyton Place is the quintessential homey New England town complete with the little red schoolhouse and town Doc. But this cover is as deceiving as the cover to the book by Grace Metalious. The movie is being told first person by Allison Mackenzie(supposedly Metalious) as she talks about her town and family & friends. There's Allison's mother(a dress shop owner) who appears prudish and over protective of Allison possibly gaining a reputation, after all her mother had one and it resulted in Allison(the illegitimate of Mr. Mackenzie a married NY business man). She spurns advances by Mike, the new principal at Peyton Place school. She eventually finds that she needs him after Allison ups and leaves after finding A) the body of Mrs. Cross hanging in Allison's closet and B) being told she was illegitimate when, after being accused of skinny dipping with mama's boy Norman(he leaves too, for WWII), the two women have a drag out fight. With her gone there is still plenty of scandal with Allison's friend, poor Selena Cross who lives with her drunk stepfather, mother(who commits suicide) and younger brother(her oldest brother left town in the first 5 minutes of the movie). The family lives in a shack and one night after a dance Selena is raped by her stepfather Lucas. Months later he signs a confession after being warned by the Doc. Selena runs for her life from Lucas(after he learns the Doc knows the truth) and she falls causing a miscarriage(with help from the Doc who falsifies records to maintain her good-standing in the community). Selena never wants her love, Ted to know the truth. As time rolls on all the boys are drafted including Ted and Rodney(who loves and marries the town tramp against his father's judgement). Unfortunately, Lucas returns and when he attempts rape again Selena bludgeon's him to death. When he's considered AWOL Selena breaks down and reveals how she burried him in the Sheep pen. Allison has to come back for the trial and meets up with Rodney, now a confident paratrooper. She also tries to reconsile with her mother. The trail is harried until the Doc takes the stand and reveals all, breaking his promise to Selena. A lot of loose ends need some tying up and this was attempted in Return To Peyton Place but this was extremely disappointing when we see what's happend to all of these characters. Lange received her first and only Academy Award nomination for her role. The scene where she is on the stand is excellent. Again, this strong women role is what she is known for even if she has had limited roles. Get this movie!!!...more info
- Overrated Film
Having heard all of my adult life about "Peyton Place," I finally got around to checking out the DVD from the library and was majestically underwhelmed. This film is so loaded with fifties teenage angst and campy, bad acting that it was a trial for me to sit through. The best actor/actress in the whole production was Arthur Kennedy, who played his role as the drunken stepfather/rapist to the hilt. Although the story is supposed to take place during the early forties, nothing about the film seems to fit in that time frame except the automobiles. The entire production seemed contrived and was overblown, overracted, and boring.
The beautiful scenes of Maine were the only redeeming feature.
As a fan of classic films, I expected to love this movie, but was sorely disapointed. The score is great, and the direction isn't bad, either, but the writing is horrendous. Why must the characters stand around giving each other speeches? Michael Rossi, the new school prinicpal, is the worst. Every time he opens his mouth it's time to pull out the soapbox. Hardly a word of the dialogue in the movie is crisp or realistic. Dialogue such as "In a way I've always felt that way, but I'm just now realizing it. . ." pepper the entire film. That's a shame, too, because the story itself contains some daring elements, as well as some very promising characters, such as Allison's boyfriend....more info
- Great Film, Actor Commentary So-So
While I've read the book and think it is much better than the film, I still love this film a lot for the great acting, music, and filmography. The DVD reproduction is much clearer than the VHS version.
I was a little disappointed in the commentary with Russ Tamblyn and Terry Moore. Both rambled on about personal items not relevant to the movie and a lot of silent gaps. While part of the commentary was enjoyable, I think maybe since so many years have passed they might have forgotten more than they remembered.
I always like the extras with the DVD versions, but this one was lacking in extras. Overall it is worth having this movie on DVD because it is a classic. The picture and audio quality is superb and worth the price. It's too bad Lana Turner died before the production of this DVD. Her commentary would have been priceless.
Unfortunately they don't make great movies like this anymore!...more info
- 5 star movie with old-school twist
Peyton Place is a crazy, wonderfully filmed movie.The plot keeps you on the edge of your seat.
Between rape, harsh lies, and death, this movie teaches you about life, and how important family can be....more info
- Sensitive Turner performance, beautiful movie
Turner received an Oscar nomination for her performance in "Peyton Place" and she deserved it. No other actress could have played the sad, vulnerable, enigmatic Constance MacKenzie as convincingly as she did. One of the best dramatic sequences in the film is Turner's tender and remorseful scene with Allison when the girl confronts her mother with the past she has hidden from her daughter for so long. Turner's breakdown in court is also very effective and presages her later performance in "Madame X." The plot's similarities with tragic events in Turner's personal life give her performance an added dimension. The memorable score, the nostalgic depiction of small town life, the beautiful cinematography, and the heartfelt performances--particularly of Turner and Diana Varsi--elevate this melodrama. Its depiction of 1950s mores make it a milestone in popular culture and a significant addition to the "women's pictures" genre in American filmmaking. A wonderful film, particularly for Turner fans....more info
- PEYTON PLACE (1957) is a movie to treasure
I think it is the Americana montages that make the Jerry Wald/Mark Robson production of PEYTON PLACE (1957, Fox) my favorite small-town America soap opera of all time. Grace Metalious' scuzzy and scandalous best-selling novel has been carefully adapted by John Michael Hayes (REAR WINDOW and other 1950's Hitchcock gems). Hampered by censorship that would not allow Selena (Oscar nominee Hope Lange) to have an abortion, it becomes a secret miscarriage and a public appendectomy. Sex scenes become romantic kisses in a vertical position. This is one movie that was actually improved by censorship that forced producer Wald, director Robson, and writer Hayes (all Oscar nominees here) to get more creative. The movie garnered nine Oscar nominations in all, lost all of them in the finals to either THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI or SAYONARA, and was a box office blockbuster that vastly improves on the trashy novel.
(CAUTION--PLOT SPOILERS THROUGHOUT!) Partially filmed in Camden and other very scenic coastal Maine locations, PEYTON PLACE opens with first-person narration by very likeable heroine Allison Mackenzie (Oscar nominated newcomer Diane Varsi) about the beauty of the seasons in her town. She is then seen having a hasty breakfast with Mom Constance (Best Actress Oscar nominee Lana Turner) before she runs off to high school. Seeming drifter Mike Rossi (Lee Phillips) arrives by car in town and witnesses the son of brutal Lucas Cross (Oscar nominee Arthur Kennedy) and wife Nellie (Betty Field) leave home. Nellie works as the Mackenzie maid. Lucas is the alcoholic school janitor. One of my favorite scenes is a montage of Allison running through backyards and the woods to get to high school, backed by one of Franz Waxman's loveliest scores and William Mellor's beautiful use of CinemaScope.
At school, Mildred Dunnock (Miss Thornton) teaches twelfth grade and is expected to be the new Principal. But Mike Rossi becomes the new school Principal. We also meet other school board members, including kindly town doctor Doc Swain (Lloyd Nolan in a career performance) and Harrington (Leon Ames), who runs a textile mill that is the town's biggest industry. In Miss Thornton's classroom, we also meet nice guy male hero Norman Page (Oscar nominee Russ Tamblyn). So in just the first reel, we are introduced to almost all of the major characters. Norman and Allison are an appealing central couple. Radiating out from them are Selena and David Nelson, Constance and Mike Rossi (whose book sex scenes are reduced to forced kisses), and bad girl Betty Anderson (Terry Moore) and Harrington's horny son Rodney (Barry Coe) for more dramatic tension and later misunderstandings.
(PLOT SPOILERS-BEWARE!) The rest of a well-paced and engrossing film masterpiece follows these different couples all over town for 157 minutes. Selena gets raped by her stepfather Lucas, resulting in the miscarriage that is publicly called an appendectomy. Allison wants to be a writer. David Nelson wants to be a lawyer. Since the time period here is World War Two, Norman and Rodney both go off to fight overseas. There is a beautiful high school dance to Auld Lang Syne and an exquisite montage of boats on Maine's Penobscot Bay and the glory of Summer after a nostalgic high school graduation.
There is also an extended sequence in the film's middle for Labor Day that rivals Labor Day in PICNIC (1955) as the finest ever put on film-singers, school parades, watermelon and hot dogs. When Constance and Mike watch a man put a ship into a bottle, then share a lobster dinner on the bay, backed by Waxman's music, PEYTON PLACE comes very close to being my favorite movie of all time. There is also "Beautiful Dreamer" and rowboats on one river, and two very different couples swimming in a lake outside of Peyton Place, leading to a major misunderstanding. That 20 minute Labor Day sequence is unforgettably evocative, but followed by something gripping and Allison leaving town to become a professional writer.
The climax of PEYTON PLACE, roughly the last half hour of 157 minutes, is a court trial. I won't tell you who is on trial or for what-we have to have some surprises left in this review-but it has Lloyd Nolan's greatest scene as Doc Swain and a satisfying ending. The finale to the movie is one of my all-time favorites (PARTIAL PLOT SPOILER). The final shot is exquisite and euphoric for me, with Allison's voice-over: "We finally discovered that Season of Love. It is only found in someone else's heart. Right now, someone is looking everywhere for it, and it is in you," with two children riding bikes down a shaded Maine street and Waxman's gorgeous score again. (NINE Oscar nominations, but not one for the unforgettably beautiful music score?!)
The 1957 Wald/Robson PEYTON PLACE, acted and written to perfection, is a soap opera masterpiece with a very compelling and rewarding plot and some of the most beautiful Americana montages ever put on film. The DVD sells for only $14.95, with audio commentary by surviving cast members Tamblyn and Moore, restored color, lovely remastered music, and glorious CinemaScope letterboxing after decades of cropped pan/scan images. You can finally appreciate William Mellor's use of color and use of wide screen on a movie heavily filmed on both coastal Maine locations (including a lockout mountain scene that is awesome) and the Fox backlot in what is now Los Angeles' Century City. Most of all is a perfect cast down to the bit roles, under Mark Robson's skillful direction.
PEYTON PLACE, one of my ten favorite movies ever, is a must-see and must-own on DVD when you have a three hour time slot. Actually longer than 157 minutes because of a 30 minute behind-the-scenes featurette, newsreels, and a theatrical trailer (so you can see how the movie was promoted).
- excellent drama
I always enjoyed this movie when I was quite younger so when it came out in a DVD, I bought it. It is hard to find a good drama these days that has the input of some of the older movies. It is great and my relatives like it too. We have a movie night and and enjoy these movies....more info
- Great Entertainment - Superior technical qualities
Although not on the level of the great films of all-time, this is a wonderful representation of how our small town society was viewed by not only author Grace Metalious, but by Hollywood.
An unforgettable musical score by Franz Waxman, and breathtaking photography by William C. Mellor make this a sumptuous indulgence.
Although the script is somewhat dated, the acting is excellent - especially Hope Lange and Russ Tamblyn....more info
- wonderful movie with interesting commentary
Thank you for the wonderful movie and interesting commentary. The German Code 2 DVD issue has no bonus feature.
I hope, the Serie "Peyton Place" and "Return to Peyton Place" coming out soon on DVD....more info
- Good film, so-so Special Features
As other reviewers have discussed the film in good detail, I will just say I have always enjoyed Peyton Place. It is one of the few instances where the film rises over the material presented.
However, I found the special features on the DVD to be very disappointing. The extra audio track is Russ Tamblyn and Terry Moore discussing the film (unfortunately most of the other stars are dead, so this is the best they could do). They are obviously not in the same room, so there is no interaction between them. Tamblyn's comments are okay, but Moore is constantly reminding us of the few high points of her so-so career.
The other special feature is the show done by AMC's Hollywood Backstory on the film - and like other Backstory's, overly dwells with sensational tidbits (especially Lana Turner's ordeal when her daughter killed her mob boyfriend).
Get the DVD for a good quality presentation of a favorite film, but not to learn anything substantive about it....more info
- the art of adaptation
another reviewer mentioned the wonderful job screenwriter John Michael Hayes did in adapting Grace Metalious' novel to the screen. He really did make a gem out of something tawdry and earned an Oscar nomination and recognition from the Screenwriter's Guild for his effort.
There's a book on Hayes' collaboration with Alfred Hitchcock, "Writing with Hitchcock" (they made 4 movies together, beginning with Rear Window), but it's pretty near to being a biography of Hayes himself, as all his work is well covered, especially Peyton Place. It also includes a reprinted New York Times article written by Hayes about the trials and tribulations of writing the screenplay for Peyton Place. Highly recommended....more info
- sudsy melodrama supreme
Twentieth Century-Fox's film version of PEYTON PLACE (based on the novel by Grace Metalious, adapted for the screen by John Michael Hayes) remains an enjoyable sudsy melodrama, full of fantastic performances including Oscar-nominated turns from Lana Turner, Diane Varsi, Russ Tamblyn, Hope Lange and Arthur Kennedy.
The lives of the residents of Peyton Place, a small New Hampshire hamlet, are exposed in this movie which was once considered the epitome of scandal. Looking back the film is much more tame than what we would see today, nevertheless certain scenes still contain a raw intensity. Lana Turner's performance does sometimes border on camp, but would we have her any other way? She's fabulous here in Technicolor.
The film focuses on strait-laced single mother Constance MacKenzie (Lana Turner) who is struggling to bring up her intelligent-yet troubled daughter Alison (the equally-troubled young starlet Diane Varsi). Alison's quiet romance with the shy Norman Page (Russ Tamblyn) comes to a premature end when the local gossips wrongly accuse the couple of swimming in the nude. Feeling suffocated by small-town morality (and discovering the truth about her father), Alison disowns her mother and moves to New York to become a writer. Meanwhile the frosty, repressed nature of Constance threatens to ruin a romance with the new high-school headmaster Michael Rossi (Lee Phillips).
We also zero in on the poor Cross family: Lucas (Arthur Kennedy) a drunkard who rapes and beats his stepdaughter Selena (Hope Lange). When Selena finally snaps and kills her tormentor, the town is thrown head-first into a murder trial.
Other roles are taken by Lloyd Nolan (as the trustworthy Dr Swain), Terry Moore (as the town tramp Betty Anderson), Scotty Morrow (as Selena's brother Joey), Betty Field (as Selena's mother Nellie) and Mildred Dunnock as beloved teacher Miss Thornton.
Mark Robson, who also directed the legendary sud-fest VALLEY OF THE DOLLS, gives this movie the same sort of feel. The score by Franz Waxman is very stirring, and the CinemaScope photography executed by William Mellor is superb. Running a hefty two-and-a-half-hours, the pace of the film never drags or lulls and cracks along at a good pace. ...more info
- The secrets and scandals of a small New England town
Based the bestselling novel by Grace Metalious, Peyton Place is a hallmark of mid-20th century American culture and remains powerful melodrama to this day. Modern audiences in particular might notice similarities with the currently popular Dawson's Creek.
The story centers around shopowner Constance MacKenzie (Lana Turner), hiding a secret from her past; her daughter Allison (Diane Varsi), who dreams of escaping from Peyton Place and becoming a writer; Allison's best friend Selena Cross (Hope Lange), who lives literally on the other side of the tracks and suffers abuse at the hands of her drunken stepfather (Arthur Kennedy); Norman Page (Russ Tamblyn), a shy, quiet student yearning to break away from his domineering mother; Rodney Harrington (Barry Coe), the playboy son of millowner Leslie Harrington (Leon Ames), who disapproves of his son's relationship with the flashy Betty Anderson (Terry Moore); and Mike Rossi (Lee Phillips), the new high school principal smitten with Constance.
Screenwriter John Michael Hayes did a magnificent job of distilling Metalious's occasionally crude story, making it acceptable to film audiences, though it can be argued that Metalious's feminist slant was lost in the process. The film was beautifully directed by Mark Robson, who's never gotten enough respect, perhaps due to his reputation as a craftsman; well, Peyton Place is a finely crafted work, solid entertainment, with majestic location work in Camden, ME, much of which will be lost in the transfer to the small screen. The cinematography is by William C. Mellor and the wonderful score is by Franz Waxman.
Peyton Place received 9 Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Screenplay-Adapted, Best Cinematography, Best Actress (Lana Turner--her only nomination), Best Supporting Actress (Hope Lange, Diane Varsi), and Best Supporting Actor (Arthur Kennedy, Russ Tamblyn). 1957 was the year of The Bridge on the River Kwai, so Peyton Place lost in every category....more info
- A Story about Small Town Life
The film opens on a seashore town while the credits roll. The leaves on the trees says Autumn. There is snow, then spring. Time is told by seasons. A horse-drawn plow furrows the field. There is trouble in a small farm family. The newspaper says the year is 1941. The local textile mill got a government contract for uniforms; more people will move to town. Scenes show this small town. [No New England accents?] The School Board wants a new man as Principal, not the local experienced teacher. But Rossi wants a fair wage, and gets it. [This teaches a lesson.] The owner of the textile mill runs the school board as well. The janitor gives his views on society. Rossi shows his skill to Miss Thornton.
Allison is attracted to local society, the well-to-do who have plenty of money and time. [Is there danger here?] Was Allison's mother right about that party? Will Principal Rossi start a class in sex education? Mrs. McKenzie is surprised at home. Does Peyton Place have low standards? What will Allison do? We see the many churches in town. Also a family squabble. Norman and Allison wander into the woods. A book in a "plain wrapper"? Do they have overly-protective single parents? Is their conversation too cute? Is there too much gossip in Peyton Place? Local standards are described to Rodney Harrington. He will obey his Father. Betty shows her appreciation for Rodney's gallantry. [Could Ted Cotter become a lawyer's clerk and learn on the job, as many did in older times?] Allison is the valedictorian for the Class of 1941.
That summer Allison writes stories. Principal Rossi recommends college, but Allison wants to learn by doing, and writes for the local newspaper. Selena confesses, Doctor Swain takes action to solve a problem. Selena falls, and has an "appendectomy". There is a Labor Day Parade, then a speech by the mill owner. Their prosperity comes from government contracts (taxes or deficit spending for non-productive functions). Life is carefree. Couples go to the lake. Will people gossip? Will this make trouble for Allison and Norman? Is there a secret that Mrs. McKenzie has never revealed? Will tragedy strike their home? Then Pearl Harbor changes their world. Life goes on in Peyton Place.
Lucas gets an unexpected hard welcome when he returns home. Will there be another scandal? What kind of respectability is there in Peyton Place? Will Selena tell the whole story? The trial of Selena brings out the facts and the truth. Dr. Matthew Swaine testifies about the past. Do young people leave Peyton Place because of gossip? Or for better jobs in a dynamic community?
I wonder what was changed in adapting the novel to a movie? Was part of this based on Grace Metalious' personal experience? Did life in Peyton Place reflect the Great Depression? Were the events common in many small towns of that era? Or today?
- forget the movie and read the book
Reading other reviews of this movie I am surprised that I am the only one who felt pretty offended by this movie. I read the book just a while ago and loved it. So, I was excited about seeing the movie. Big let down!
First of all they change one of the main character's names and for no good reason that I can see. There is no relation between the Allison McKenzie of the book and the one in the movie--they are completely differenct characters!
When I read the book, I felt that I was reading a serious piece of literature that was uncovering a small town's egotistical, self-important view of itself which, let's face it, is pretty common in many human societies. Metalious was making a commentary on how her community was repressive of individuality and free expression. The movie seemed more concerned with whether Lana Turner's character was ever going to get a little action. Moreover, the most commonly used words in reviews of the movie are melodrama and soap opera. Now, when I think of melodrama and soap opera I think of Dallas, Days of our lives and 90210. Basically, trash that presents mindless, unbelievable situations.
Metalious' book was done a grave injustice by this movie. I am still trying to figure out how she was a script consultant and allowed this to get to film!...more info
- SEX OUTSIDE THE CITY.........
HEAVILY 'doctored' by the Studio, this brilliant saga of small-town life predates the almost dated David Lynch excursions into Smallville, but still holds many a thrill today.
Quite a lot of trash too and those taboo subjects! Splendid performances by ever-glamorous Lana Turner - this time as a mother with a little secret or two.....DIANE VARSI plays the daughter and 'tell-all' narrator. Yes, it's a coming of age tale centering around a high school senior class nearing graduation with WW11 looming, lots of unfairness in the little town too complete with gossips, rapists, abortionists, nude [or is it semi nude?] bathing? etc. You know - regular life!
Oh, they certainly don't make them like this today. Would like to see cutting room footage on this one!
[Very worthy of mention? Hope Lange as the fragile, almost doomed Selena Cross - beautiful performance!]
Highly recommended!...more info
- Just okay
I'm sure Peyton Place was a novel for it's time, especially with all its talk about teenage sex, domestic rape and a few other shocker thrown in, but it doesn't stand up to the test of time for this viewer. I kept one eye on the clock most of the time because it felt incredibly slow. A good part of that because this was orginally a television series and not a straight movie. The series does manage to get the nuisances of a small town down but to be honest I just wasn't riveted by this. So again I'm the odd woman out on this. View at your own risk....more info
- Sex, frustration and violence ferment under the placid surface of a small New England town...
Mark Robson did a superior job of evoking the feeling of life in a nice place where "time is not measured by the clock or the calendar, but by the seasons." Robson avoids the trashy approach and presents its people in a compassionate light... There are a host of first-rate performances...
The story takes place in the late 1930s and begins as the High School's new principal, Michael Rossi (Lee Philips), arrives in town to assume his duties... In quick succession, many of the town's local inhabitants are introduced...
Constance MacKenzie (Lana Turner) is an attractive widow who owns a dress shop... She runs it efficiently and persists in keeping her teen-aged daughter, Allison (Diane Varsi in her film debut), insulated from the world...
Allison's best friend is Selena Cross (Hope Lange), who lives in a shack on the wrong side of town with her worn-out mother, Constance's housekeeper Betty Field, and her brutal stepfather, Lucas (Arthur Kennedy).
There is also Russ Tamblyn, a sensitive, insecure mother-dominated adolescent; Barry Coy, the arrogant son of the town's biggest tycoon; Terry Moore, the school flirt; David Nelson, the boyfriend of Selena Cross; and Doc Swain (Lloyd Nolan), a well-liked medic... These are the most prominent characters among a large assortment of townspeople whose lives form a pattern of love, hate and destruction...
The first of the narrative's dramatic occasions is set one evening after the high school's Graduation Dance when Ted proposes to Selena and she promises to wait for him to become a successful lawyer...
That night when she returns to her ramshackle home, Selena finds her stepfather, Lucas, alone, drunk, and abusive... He attacks her, as a result of which she becomes pregnant...
Doc Swain immediately confronts Lucas with his crime, obtains a written confession from him and orders the man to leave 'Peyton Place' for good... Later, the doctor is forced to perform an abortion on Selena which he lists officially as an appendectomy...
The plot then shifts to the emotional conflict between school principal Rossi and Constance... Rossi has been making a romantic bid for Constance but she bitterly rejects his love in her continued retreat from any emotional commitment...
When Constance is told by the town gossip that Allison has been swimming in the nude with Russ Tamblyn, she confronts her daughter with the story... An angry scene follows, and the truth is revealed... Chaotic series of events follows...
'Peyton Place' is a scandalous bestseller, one of the first to reveal those nasty secrets of ordinary people... It draws nine Oscar nominations... The motion picture offers an extremely tasteful portrait of an American town, with an intelligent, sensitive concern for its characters... It is a wholly unobjectionable entertainment which retains all of the strong dramatic qualities of the novel..
- classic romance
My husband & I were married at the White Hall Inn in Camden, Maine. The movie was shot at that location. I purchased this for an anniversary present for us and as a momentum for our wedding memories. There are many clips and photos while making this film there."Scandal in a New England Town."That's were it all took place.It is truley, a classic romance!...more info
- A classic soap!
"Peyton Place" is one of the best movie soap operas ever made.
It's 1950s filmmaking in top form.Jerry Wald's Technicolor and
CinemaScope production is terrific,and Mark Robson's strong
direction is perfect.The entire cast is brilliant,but two of
them really stand out.Lana Turner gives her best performance,
while Hope Lange steals the movie as a haunting and wonderfully
touching Selena.On top of all this,Franz Waxman contributes one
of the loveliest and most memorable scores in movie history(that
main theme is a gem!).This is how to film a novel!...more info
- A lost Art
Peyton Place is one of the classics in movie making. unfortunately a lost art in comparison to today's outrageously horrid form of preserving this art. It stands up on its own as piece displaying fine writing (on its own accord), fine acting, scoring and direction. Those who are not too adversely conditioned by today's movies; who still possess the ability to appreciate the finer things will find this film a gem of the cherished type of movie making that too few of us lone for. I am a philosopher and writer of aphorisms. [...]...more info
- A big screen soap that does little to improve on the small screen variety
The youngsters of a small town called Peyton Place chafe under the stifling conservatism and parochialism of their parents' generation.
The performances are stiff (with the exception of the always dependable Arthur Kennedy) and the narrative plods along from one contrived shock to the next, but I must admit it held my interest much of the time. In this film, you are never far away from a murder, an abortion, or a tragic misunderstanding. Franz Waxman composed an evocative score that often manages to communicate the longing and hopefulness of frustrated youth with little help from John Michael Hayes's screenplay. It amazes me that this film was nominated for nine Oscars, but my faith in the Academy is marginally restored by the fact that it lost in every category (although Kennedy may well have deserved a supporting actor award).
- Great Movie
I loved this book and I think the movie is great also. When watching it please keep in mind American society of the 1950's. Most movies before Peyton Place ignored the underlying problems of small town life and presented a sugar-coated version of reality.
This movie deals with problems such as child abuse and abortion in an era when these topics were barely whispered about.
The filming of this movie is beautiful (much was filmed in Camden Maine). I also loved the musical score.
Much of the cast, especially Lloyd Nolan and Russ Tamblyn hit the mark. The only minus is Lee Phillips he is too preachy and can't hold up the scenes he is in with Lana Turner.
This is a great movie to get lost in on a cold winter day.
Great Movie!...more info