Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: James Stewart, Doug McClure, Glenn Corbett, Patrick Wayne, Rosemary Forsyth
Director: Andrew V. McLaglen
Genres: Westerns, Drama, Military & War
A rich virginia farmer stays out of the civil war then joins it to protect his family. Studio: Uni Dist Corp. (mca) Release Date: 03/28/2006 Starring: James Stewart Tom Simcox Run time: 105 minutes Rating: Nr Directo... more »
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"These are my sons. They don't belong to the state!"
Dave | Tennessee United States | 01/11/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I agree 100% with Steven Hellerstedt's comments concerning the lack of historical authenticity in the film "Shenandoah". The five-star rating I'm giving this is for the acting, plot, beautiful scenery, historical setting, and the entertaining, if hokey, dialogue. I grew up watching this classic Civil War drama and must admit it still captures my heart every time I see it.
Jimmy Stewart stars as the patriarch (Mr. Anderson) of a farming family in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley during the Civil War (I guess this was supposed to be before Gen. Sheridan laid waste to it in 1864!). His wife has been dead for many years and now he's facing the crisis of his life. He tries desperately to keep his six sons out of the war that had torn the nation apart.
Early in the movie we see what kind of a man Mr. Anderson is when he prays at the dinner table with his sons: "Lord, we cleared this land, we plowed it, sowed it, and harvested. We cooked the harvest. It wouldn't be here, we wouldn't be eatin' it
if we hadn't done it all ourselves. We worked dog-bone hard for every crumb and morsel, but we thank you just the same anyway, Lord, for this food we're about to eat. Amen."
Mr. Anderson finally admits "Now, it concerns us" (-the war) when a Union patrol mistakes his youngest son as a Confederate soldier and takes him prisoner. Anderson and his family set off on a journey to find him, but their journey will only leave more heart-ache in Mr. Anderson's already broken heart. Towards the end of the movie, Anderson says bitterly, "It's like all wars, I suppose. The undertakers are winnin' it."
This classic has something for everyone, with a fine mixture of comedy, drama, romance, and action. It is very tragic, but it clearly captures the harsh conditions faced by the innocent civilians during America's bloodiest war. The dvd has a fine picture and sound quality, but other than the original trailer there are no special features. It seems to me that they should've at least included a "making-of" documentary for such a famous classic.
I've studied the Civil War ever since I was old enough to read, and even though this movie is historically inaccurate, it remains one of the best Civil War films ever made. I highly recommend it to all history buffs and classic movie fans."
Great Movie, So-so DVD
J. Michael Click | Fort Worth, Texas United States | 05/10/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Classic, family-friendly Civil War story about an isolationist Virginia farmer (James Stewart) who is forced to become involved in the conflict raging around him when his youngest son (Philip Alford) is mistakenly taken prisoner by Union soldiers. Like John Wayne in "The Searchers", Stewart sets out to hunt down his kidnapped loved one, enduring physical, emotional, and spiritual hardships along the way. Uniformly well-acted by a superb cast, with stand-out performances from Patrick Wayne, film newcomer Katharine Ross, talented juvenile lead Alford, and of course, venerable screen legend Stewart. Capably directed by Andrew V. McLaglen, from a solid screenplay that deftly blends moments of sweet-natured humor and wrenching drama. (Take special note of the tragic scene at the family farm ... most of the violence takes place off-screen, and is all the more disturbing because of what you don't see. Now that's skillful, mature filmmaking!)Fans of the movie who have patiently awaited its release on DVD are bound to be a bit disappointed with Universal's unremastered print and bare bones presentation. The first two or three minutes of the DVD are plagued by bad sound (the music crackles and pops with distortion) and a horrendous video transfer (the picture is grainy and has tiny white lines running through it). Thankfully, things quickly get better after that rocky start. The DVD includes the Original Theatrical Trailer which has deteriorated badly and is presented in full-frame; sadly, there are no other extras offered on this edition."
Outstanding film, on my personal top 10 list.
D. R. Schryer | Poquoson, VA United States | 09/21/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a bittersweet, moving -- sometimes even beautiful --film. Jimmy Stewart is superb as Charlie Anderson, an arrogant, self-reliant man who thinks that he and his family can ignore the civil war which rages around his farm in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. He is disabused of this idealistic but naive notion when Union troops mistake his beloved youngest son, "Boy," for a rebel soldier and take him prisoner. Impetuously, the furious Anderson rides off with his older sons on a Quixotic mission to get the boy back. But this dangerous adventure costs him the lives of two sons and one of their wives. Only after the chastened Anderson reluctantly abandons his search does his beloved "Boy" -- who has escaped -- return home to him. Fine acting, good drama and characterization, beautiful scenery and film score, and a poignant ending make this an oustanding movie. One of the ten best fims ever made in my opinion -- and, quite possibly, Jimmy Stewart's greatest role."
A very good heartfelt movie for the whole family
Craig Matteson | Ann Arbor, MI | 01/22/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"While this movie doesn't fit today's tastes for irony, cynicism, and action that is as violent and graphic as possible, I like this movie a great deal. Actually, it is because it isn't like today's movies that I appreciate it more. Some find its earnestness too sweet and the humor a bit ham-bone. But I am willing to transport myself into a time when such things were possible in movies. All movies have conventions and none are "realistic" - not even documentaries. So, if you can accept one set of conventions, you should be able to adapt to another and appreciate the movie for what it sets out to be.This is not a movie about violence per se. It is about family and loss, and deals with the notion of trying to be in the world but apart from it and how difficult that can be because the world has a way of rolling over you. The Civil War is the backdrop of this question. Jimmy Stewart's character, Charlie Anderson, is a widower who still grieves for his lost sweetheart. He has a bunch of sons and one daughter. He tries to keep them out of the war, but cannot. His daughter is pursued by Lieutenant Sam (Doug McClure) who fights for the Confederacy. (If both armies are bad to Charlie Anderson - the Yankees are the worse army in this movie.)My two favorite scenes are the family prayer over the meal where Charlie thanks God for the meal and food while noting without their hard work it wouldn't be on the table. The other is when Lieutenant Sam asks Charlie for Jennie's hand in marriage. Charlie asks Sam why he wants to marry Jennie. Sam say's its because he loves her. Charlie says that isn't good enough. Sam is nonplussed. Charlie asks if he likes her. Sam doesn't get it. And the explanation Charlie gives should be printed on a card and handed to EVERY young couple contemplating marriage. It is wonderful and true.This is a good movie if not a great one. If you enjoy Jimmy Stewart, this is a very good performance. If you like heartfelt movies and enjoy something not laced with the bitter taste of modern movies, then this is one you will likely enjoy. I still like to watch it now and again."