Over the years I’ve been trying to watch all of the films on the American Film Institute’s top 100 films, using the 10th Anniversary Edition to work with. After today, I now have only 19 films left. (Perhaps when I’m done with those I’ll start on their Heroes and Villians list).
The Grapes of Wrath is one of those great American classics that manages to get on most of the big lists. With that in mind, I was expecting a minor let-down because of all the great things I’d heard about it. Yesterday I had one of those rare experiences watching a film where all of my expectations were met and exceeded.
I found myself mesmerized by the people in the story; I wanted them to succeed. The Grapes of Wrath is a depressing film, which I knew coming in, but I was surprised by the little instances within the film where kindness was shown. In a film peopled by crooked cops and harsh times, it was refreshing to see these acts of kindness and integrity.
The lighting in the film was also superb. In the opening scene where Tom is in his old house at night it really looks like it’s at night. And in another scene, where he has a candle at night, it looks real. I know The Grapes of Wrath is the text-book example of natural lighting, but there’s a reason for that. 🙂
And without spoiling anything, I love how the film ended.
I’ll review All About Eve later.
How many films from AFI’s list have you seen?