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Inherit The Wind
review by Zach B.
Running Time: 128 minutes
Starring Spencer Tracy, Fedric March, Gene Kelly, Dick
York, Donna Anderson with Harry Morgan and Florence
Screenplay by Nedrick Young and Harold Jacob Smith
Based upon the play by Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. lee
Directed by Stanley Kramer
Retail Price: $14.98
Features: Theatrical Trailer
Specs: 1.66:1 Non-Anamorphic Widescreen, English Mono,
French Mono, Spanish Mono, French Subtitles, Spanish
Subtitles, English Closed Captions, Scene Selections (16
Released: December 11th, 2001
"Inherit The Wind" is loosely based on a true story, even
if large chunks of the dialogue are based on the actual
vents of the "Scopes Monkey Trial" from 1925. After teacher
Bertram Cates is arrested for teaching Darwin's theory of
evolution, Henry Drummond, a lawyer, defends him. However,
the strict fundamentalist leader Matt Brady. As the trial
goes into play, the plot begins to explode, thicken and
rivet in a rather amazing story about how small things and
doing the right thing can be so much.
As time passes, "Inherit The Wind" becomes a bigger and
bigger classic. It's truly one of my favorite classic movies
and of Stanley Kramer's best films he's ever directed in my
opinion. It's just really, really well done. Everything
comes together perfectly in this film with its strong
production values and cast. Kramer directs this with much
passion. His great shots, the characters he builds and shows
off and the tension he creates is hard to match.
The acting is also superb. A nice performance from Dick
York is featured, but the stand-outs of course are
Oscar® winners Fredric Marck and Spencer Tracy in their
performances. There is so much will and strength in their
performances and they really carry the movie with much grace
and spirit.Gene Kelly also has a part in it, which did earn
him some great reviews in a rather dramatic role. There are
a variety of supporting roles and all of them are truly
great. The cast here is simply phenomenal and I couldn't
imagine a better cast for the film. It's even like magic.
Though perhaps the strongest aspect of the film is the
sharp writing from Young and Smith, who adapted the stage
play. The two capture so much with the characters and plot,
it's really some classic writing here. Sure there are fine
monologues, but they capture the themes and morals of what
all of this is trying to teach us. There are so many issues
to consider within the film. The school board's rules, free
spech, what is true and what's not... and something small
leads to something big.
There's no wonder why "Inherit The Wind" was nominated
for four Oscars®. If you've never seen it, or ever heard
of it, it's a must see. Sit back, relax and enjoy some
great, dramatic filmmaking.
"Inherit The Wind," sadly, is yet another MGM title that
is 1) recent 2) not anamorphic and 3) deserves a much better
restoration. The 1.66:1 letterbox transfer pretty much seems
to have had no care or love. Shimmering and noise is all
over this transfer and is rather annoying. Pieces of dirt,
blemishes, scratches and other distractions do appear on the
print as well. Still, I've seen worse. I was just a bit
disappointed that it was not anamorphic. It also needed some
more cleaning up.
English, French and Spanish mono tracks are offered, and
they are rather good. I was surprised how high fidelity
turned out to be, and how clean the sound elements did sound
considering the age of the movie (its over 40 years old).
Dialogue and all the other sounds are pretty crisp and are
easy to hear. I didn't hear any distorition or cracked
sound. This mono is very good and works... and that's
important. French and Spanish subtitles, plus English closed
captioning is on this release.
The Theatrical Trailer in full frame. Pure vintage
stuff! Kramer introduces it. It actually plays more like a
newsreel. I wish there was some documentary, or background
on the real trial or something. Oh well.
"Inherit The Wind" is some great filmmaking and it's a
great story no less. It's one superb film I urge everyone to
see. The acting is really incredible too. While the transfer
is a bit disappointing, and the extras are bare bones, the
sound is decent and the price is right. Fans of the film or
cinema lovers, do pick this one up!
(4.5/5 - NOT included in
NOT an average)