All That Heaven Allows

All That Heaven Allows

DVD - 2001
Average Rating:
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A wealthy widow marries her much younger gardner and becomes the target of small town gossip.
Publisher: [Irvington, NY] : Criterion Collection, c2001.
Edition: Widescreen.
ISBN: 9781559409124
1559409126
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (89 min.) : sd., col. ; 4 3/4 in.

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8
8honcho8
Jul 31, 2017

Douglas Sirk was a genius director and this is one of his best. As a man who would never watch a soap opera, this is like an intelligent soap opera. He does many wonderful things with light in this movie. There is a wonderful scene with Jane Wyman, where she is in emotional turmoil and standing in front of a rainbow colored multi-paned window. The lights play over her, it's just wonderful. A soap with intelligence and depth.

Read_and_Write Jan 15, 2016

15 January '16

This film is a wonderful trip back to 1956. It's got great, snappy dialogue - entertaining snobs and effete characters.
Douglas Sirk's visuals, detail, lighting and composition will hold your attention.

m
ManMachine
Aug 08, 2015

OK - Was "All That Heaven Allows" melodramatic? - Yes. Indeed. It was. And, was it corny-corny-corny? - Most definitely. And, was it clichéd to the max? - Yep. Right over the top.

And, yet, regardless of all of the above - Was "All That Heaven Allows" worth a view? Yep. That it was. In fact, it actually could be worth a second viewing, too. (If, of course, you're in the right frame of mind)

1955's "All That Heaven Allows" was a lush, Technicolor, Ross Hunter/Douglas Sirk production that (believe it, or not) actually made "humdrum" seem somehow interesting.

I don't know exactly what it is about this particular "suburban-life" soap opera that sets it apart from the rest of the junk - But, it certainly did manage to hold my attention for most of its 90-minute running time.

*Note* - This film certainly did contain its fair share of unintentionally laughable dialogue and situations, especially when it came to widow Cary Scott's interaction with her 2 snot-nosed, college-age children.

a
akirakato
Jan 07, 2015

This is a 1955 romance film directed by Douglas Sirk.
It tells about Cary Scott, a well-to-do widow, and Ron Kirby, a much younger gardener.
Both fall in love.
Cary is an affluent widow in suburban New England, whose social life involves her country club peers, college-age children, and a few men vying for her affection.
She becomes interested in Ron, who turns out an intelligent, down-to-earth and respectful yet passionate younger man.
Ron introduces her to people who seem to have no need for wealth and status and she responds positively.
Cary accepts his proposal of marriage, but becomes distressed when her friends and college-age children get angry.
The children look down upon Ron and his friends and reject their mother for this socially unacceptable arrangement.
Eventually, bowing to this pressure, she breaks off the engagement.
When Ron has a life-threatening accident, however, Cary realizes how wrong she had been to allow other people's opinions and superficial social conventions dictate her life choices.
In those days back in 1955, Cary must have received a lot of pressure and tons of prejudice.
It is a fascinating and thought-provoking romance.

n
Nursebob
Jan 03, 2015

Pretty controversial for its time, this film by Douglas Sirk revolves around a mature woman who falls in love with a much younger man. It proves to be yet another magnificent over-the-top technicolour melodrama from the master of the genre. As always the pretty colours and beautiful white people are merely props used to illustrate darker truths......middle class conformity, xenophobia, materialism, alienation, and the social isolation that awaits those who dare to think outside the pack mentality. Don't dismiss this film based on its soap opera appearance.....it's a bitter pill wrapped with a candy coating.

j
jjd66
Dec 14, 2014

A great flick directed bu Douglas Sirk. Great story and performances.

f
frustranisi
Dec 13, 2014

This movie is very indicative of the mid 1950s. Social constraints were still in place from the Victorian era, although in a muted way. Reminds me of my mother's frequent comment during that era:" What will people/the neighbors/church congregation think?" She felt it necessary to go to the liquor store in a neighboring city to purchase cooking wine.
This film is magnificently directed by Douglas Sirk with vibrant color and flawless camera shots. The cast is stellar, many of the roles are small but fully fleshed out by cast members.

s
sallyvonbutane
Mar 02, 2012

What an elegant, beautiful movie. This movie so obviously inspired "Far from Heaven" and other contemporary films. Great acting though the music is over the top.

s
stuvw27
Feb 28, 2011

This self-styled acerbic critique of 1950 American Middle-class mores is viciously relentless in its insincerity. Drowning in depths of fluff and littered with cliché piled on cliché and half-baked, pseudo-intellectual characterizations it’s an hour and a half of sophomoric preaching shouted over a paint-by-numbers backdrop with all the technique of a high school production of a Greek tragedy. About the only persons not to “get” the “message” are those who desperately want to see a glossy romance. Even so, the presentation is so cockeyed as to make the most self-indulgent viewer uncomfortable. The acting is similar to a sick joke that makes you wince in embarrassment when it’s told: She walks around like a nasty little kid from broken toy to broken toy; he talks as if he’s some robot alien who is new to human emotions and language. They both act like pinballs frantically bouncing off gaudy bumpers and flashing lights… come to think of it, a pinball machine is a perfect metaphor for this movie: Bright, noisy, empty, senseless.

m
missy2
Mar 30, 2010

Classic 1950s film that comments on the socially restricted role of the aging widow and the judgments she faces when she strives to break out of her old role and start a new life. Beautifully photographed. A must see!

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