Classic Movie Night: Gone With The Wind

Gone With The Wind

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Tonight – thanks to Retro Cinema at our local Movie Tavern – I get to share one of the all-time movie classics with Sarah: “Gone With The Wind“.  She’s never seen it before, so I hope that she enjoys it; so far, she’s liked all of the old movies that I’ve dragged her to see….

But, honestly – what’s not to love?  This film is a sweeping epic that has it all – romance, intrigue, family, friendship, good times, bad times - all told against a larger-than-life background.  The cast is top-notch, the costumes are amazing, the cinematography is stunning, and the story is timeless.

Once seen, who can forget the first time the audience gets a glimpse of Rhett Butler, Aunt Pitty-Pat having an attack of the vapors at the ball, Prissy screaming “I don’t know nothin’ bout birthing babies!”, Ashley and Melanie running towards each other (OK, that one is kinda cheesy), Rhett sweeping Scarlett off her feet and carrying her up the staircase…..the list goes on and on.

And, of course, that most famous of all movie lines, “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.”

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MSDGOWI EC001.

My first exposure to this movie was back in 1976, when it was shown on network television for the very first time in a highly-anticipated 2-night EVENT. I gotta tell you, I didn’t see what all the fuss was about;  the scope of the film kind of got lost on a 19-inch TV set.

(A couple of years later, I had an opportunity to see it on a big movie screen – the way this film was MEANT to be seen - and then I understood why this movie has remained an enduring favorite.)

The one thing that I do remember, though, is a 16-year-old me seeing a character in the movies who I could finally identify with. Because as much as I always wished that I could be one of the Melanie Hamiltons of the world – sweet, patient, loving, and kind – the truth of the matter is that I saw in Scarlett O’Hara a reflection of myself.

Mind you, I didn’t share all of her characteristics (I never had men swooning at my feet), but I certainly understood what made her tick.

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As_God_is_my_witness.

I can also remember one of my friends – a fella I had a secret crush on at the time – saying at the end of the first night of the TV presentation, “Well, now she’s (Scarlett) shown us that she’s going to be ‘bad’ from here on out!”.

And I was devastated.

Because to me, when Scarlett pulled herself up and vowed that she would never let herself or any of her kin go hungry again, I didn’t see a bad person - I saw a woman with a spine of steel who wasn’t going to let the world get the better of her.

A sadder but wiser girl was born that night – my crush was crushed; my friend wanted a “Melanie”, and I knew that I would forever be a “Scarlett”.

Fiddle-dee-dee.

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Bitch Please.

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Now, no post about “Gone With The Wind” would be complete without a link to the Carol Burnett send-up that was done not long after GWTW aired on national television - the moment when “Starlett” appears at the top of the stairs in a dress made out of her drapes  is without a doubt one of the all-time funniest in TV history (“I saw it in the window and I just couldn’t resist it”):

(Click on picture to watch video)

Went with the Wind 2
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Still cracks me up after all these years…..
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About Teresa in Fort Worth, TX

A short, fat, middle-aged, happily-married, mother of 4 daughters. A former high school valedictorian (way back in the Stone Age), a Civil Engineering major in college, a middle-of-the-road Conservative, and a moderate Methodist. I know just enough to get myself in trouble....
This entry was posted in Classic Movie Features, Family, I Love America, Messin' with my kids and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Classic Movie Night: Gone With The Wind

  1. Oh, goodness, I am still in tears from laughing so hard. THAT never gets old :D

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