“It is hard to tell of happiness. Time goes by and we feel safe too soon. “
Legends of the Fall, 1994, USA
Recommended by: Cindy, Robin and Amber
First off, a fun fact I found out on IMDB trivia: the movie was originally set to be filmed here in Winnipeg, but the city refused to move some trees, so production was moved to Alberta and British Columbia.
I didn’t know anything about this movie when I put it on. All I knew was that Brad Pitt was really good looking in the movie. Not in my opinion, since I’ve never understood the hype surrounding his apparent good looks, but other women tend to think so. After watching the movie, I can say that, no, I did not find him attractive in the movie. But I don’t fault other women for finding him attractive.
Pitt stars as Tristan, the wild and rebellious middle brother to cautious Alfred (Aidan Quinn) and young and naive Samuel (Henry Thomas). They live in rural America with their father, Col. William (Anthony Hopkins). When Samuel returns from school with his fiancée, Susannah (Julia Ormond), their lives are changed forever when all three brothers realize they love Susannah. The movie spans a number of years, from World War I to the late 1920′s (during prohibition), to the 60s.
I loved the movie, except for one tiny, little thing that bothered me, especially at the beginning of the movie. Pitt’s character is rebellious and unstable, yet Susannah is in love with him. His brother Alfred is a safe man, who’ll stick around and love her dearly. It got me thinking about stereotypes – do all women want to “tame” the wild and rebellious man, instead of marrying the one who’ll always be there? I honestly could not see what was so attractive about Pitt’s character. It does seem that, for dramatic purposes, in movies, women tend to go for the ones that are dramatic. Because marrying a character like Alfred just doesn’t make for an interesting movie, I guess. I’ve noticed that Hollywood tends to romanticize wild and “untamable” men, when, in reality, women who try to settle down with men like that generally get their hearts broken. But movies bear little resemblance to real life.
This annoyance quickly dissipated as I “got to know” Tristan. He became a remarkably complex and tragic character. All of the characters had a complexity to them. The movie itself was one of the saddest movies I’ve ever seen. A large part of it was the performances. All of the actors give realistic and painfully heartbreaking performances. Often, they were acting without speaking, and their body language was enough to convey tragedy. Hopkins was especially good at this. I cried a lot during this movie.
I’ve realized that 1994 was a really kick-ass year for movies. There was The Shawshank Redemption, Forrest Gump, Pulp Fiction and Ed Wood, among many others. It’s no wonder this movie wasn’t nominated for Best Picture. There were too many other amazing movies released that year. And, surprisingly, this movie wasn’t especially well-received by critics. It was seen as being melodramatic. It was certainly a tragic and emotional movie, but I wouldn’t say it was melodramatic. I thought it was a beautiful movie. It’s definitely an underrated movie at the very least.