Picnic

1955

Drama / Romance

150
IMDb Rating 7.1 10 7,769

Synopsis


Downloaded times
September 26, 2020

Director

Cast

Cliff Robertson as Alan Benson
Kim Novak as Madge Owens
Rosalind Russell as Rosemary, the School Teacher
William Holden as David Larrabee
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
1.02 GB
1280*720
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
115 min
P/S N/A / N/A
2.09 GB
1920×1080
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
115 min
P/S N/A / N/A

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by janiceferrero 7 / 10 / 10

Small Town America According To William Inge

There is so much to enjoy in this American melodrama with a deliciously miscast William Holden and a gelid, beautiful Kim Novak that the film can be seen again and again without being disturbed by the 40 year old Holden playing the drop out stallion trying to make amends with his past forging a sort of future for himself, at least that's what I think he wants and I'm sticking with that notion. Holden plays the loser with his shiny boots and smallish brain and that's what reminds us this is just a romantic drama thought by William Inge with a patina of reality and that's all that is real, the patina. I didn't care that emotionally couldn't play because emotionally worked for me thanks to the sexual power of the miscast star. William Holden is a sort of God who awakes the (seemingly) heavily sedated Novak into a towering passion. I would have too. The supporting cast is sensational. Rosalind Russell is a jarring masterpiece of an over the top clichè. The old maid, school teacher with a taste for alcohol and an understandable terror of her own future, overtaking her at an incredible speed. Susan Strasberg, in the part created by Kim Stanley on the Broadway stage is delightful but made me wonder what Kim Stanley may have done with that part. Betty Field is the one character that expresses the most saying the least. She, as per usual, is outstanding. All in all, a film/play that shouldn't be dismissed.

Reviewed by don_agu 8 / 10 / 10

Moonglow and Rosalind Russell

William Inge had his finger on the pulse of small town America. He wasn't checking the heartbeats of its inhabitants but his own. I've just said that as if I knew all about it and I don't, but I sense it. I mean, "Splendor In The Grass", "The Dark At The Top Of The Stairs", "Come Back Little Sheeba" That's all the evidence we need to know that he was a male writer with a woman's heart. "Picnic" epitomises that theory. Director Joshua Logan and writer Daniel Taradash trusted Inge's world without questioning it. Everything flows with the irrational sanity of a woman's heart. William Holden was a bit too old for the part but who cares! He is William Holden, capable to provoke passions of Mediterranean intensity at any age. He seems a bit self conscious at times and that helps the character's foibles no end. Kim Novak is breathtaking. Susan Strasberg milks her tomboy with a longing for all its worth. Betty Field, Daisy Buchanan in the original "Great Gatsby", gives a masterful performance without uttering a word that may reveal what she's actually feeling, until the end of course. That scene in which she tries to stop her daughter from going away, is as much Field's as it is Inge's. Rosalind Russell didn't get the Oscar for her superb, time bomb disguised in a school teacher's dress, performance. Her craving for sex and romance and sex and marriage and sex is as bold as anything she had ever done and Rosalind Russell new how to be bold from "His Girl Friday" to "Auntie Mame". The Moonglow sequence has become a classic moment in pictures. Deservedly so. I would suggest, if you haven't done it yet, take a trip through William Inge's territory. Familiar faces, familiar landscapes, familiar feelings, all completely new.

Reviewed by blanche-2 8 / 10 / 10

A drifter is the catalyst for a lot of small town shake-ups

Hunky drifter Hal (William Holden) arrives in a small Kansas town, disturbing the status quo in "Picnic," a 1955 film based on Wiliam Inge's play and directed by Josh Logan. It co-stars Kim Novak, Susan Strasberg, Rosalind Russell, Betty Field, Cliff Robertson, Arthur O'Connell, and Verna Felton. It's Labor Day and time for the big annual picnic. Beautiful, 19-year-old Madge Owens prepares to attend the picnic with Arthur (Robertson), a young man from a wealthy family. She fights with her jealous, nerdy sister, Millie. And she's warned by her mother (Field) that with each passing year she will become less marketable as a wife. She's advised to solidify things with Arthur. Renting a room from them is Rosemary, a schoolteacher - what one called "an old maid" back then. A brittle loudmouth, she's doesn't have not much use for her boyfriend Howard, but he's taking her to the picnic. When Hal jumps off the train to look up his old college friend Arthur, he innocently becomes a catalyst for change. In one way or another, he manages to arouse emotions - mostly sexual - in nearly everyone he meets. A braggart who gives his loose-ends, wandering life a romantic spin, he's hoping Arthur's dad will give him a job. Then he sees Madge. "Picnic" is a beautiful story about loneliness, settling for what you can get, love, frustration, and dreams left behind. Madge is sick of being the pretty one, Millie is sick of being the smart one, Rosemary is sick of being an old maid, Arthur is sick of not being a winner in his father's eyes. "Picnic" contains some memorable scenes, the best remembered being the classic "Moonglow" sequence when Madge shuns tradition and gives into her womanly feelings in one of the most erotic scenes ever filmed. William Holden is too old for the role for Hal (his classmate, played by Cliff Robertson, is 29) but his casting is excellent. Virile, oozing with sex appeal and good looks, Hal turns a lot of heads when he's shirtless and when he flashes his gorgeous smile. In Madge, he sees his last chance to make something of himself; with her as his inspiration, he can do anything. Gorgeous in lavender, Kim Novak's Madge is every man's dream, and as she makes evident in her scenes with Robertson, she isn't sure this is all there is. When she meets Hal, he awakens feelings in her she's never had. Betty Field does a beautiful job as Flo Owens, a woman whose life has been one of disappointment but hopes for a good marriage for Madge. Susan Strasberg as the geeky Millie is superb - tomboyish, with feelings for things other than English literature held inside. The main characters all believe their lives are on a set path. No one believes this more than Millie. "I will be living in New York and writing books no one reads," she announces to her sister. But it's she who convinces Madge that for the fearless, life doesn't have to be set in stone. Arthur O'Connell is effective as Rosemary's boyfriend - though he normally goes along with her, he can be tough when necessary. The scene where he's completely overcome by the town's women and can't get a word in is a classic. Arthur's afraid of change, but his life is going to change by unanimous female consent. One of the best performances comes from veteran Verna Felton as Mrs. Potts. Her final scene with Flo Owens is so poignant as she talks about what it's meant to her to watch Flo's daughters grow up while she cares for her invalid mother. When she meets Hal, it's as if her whole existence comes alive once again. "There was a man around, and it was good," she says. Felton essays a wonderful, wise woman with an understanding of life and love and makes the role shine. The problematic role is that of Rosemary. When people say that Picnic is dated, they're perhaps speaking of Rosemary, an old maid whose sexual desires become unbearable once she sees Hal and witnesses Hal and Madge together. "Every year I keep telling myself something will happen," she tearfully tells Howard. "But it doesn't." What's dated is the implication that an unmarried woman must be unfulfilled - the concept is dated, but it fits into '50s middle America - and don't kid yourself, step out of a big city and there are plenty of people who still feel this way. Rosemary's big confrontation scene with Howard is magnificent acting, but I frankly found Russell over the top in parts of the movie. Some of it is the character, some is not enough attention to directing her. Rosemary might be annoying, but she is also an object of pity. When you wish she'd just stop talking and leave, there's a problem. "Picnic" doesn't tell us about the rest of these peoples' lives. The final scenes are really just the beginning. Though both Hal and Madge want to build a real life together, one wonders if they can, and if love and passion are enough to carry them through hard times. One suspects that Madge will one day return to Kansas, sadder but wiser. Hal will always have wanderlust, always put the best spin on marginal situations, and never really hold down a good job. Rosemary will be able to put on an act that she has what she wants, but that's all it will be. Without the competition of Madge, Millie may just surprise herself by blossoming, allowing the womanly part of her in, and have some opportunities in the big city that are more than career-based. In fact, of all of the characters, she perhaps has the best future in front of her. A slice of '50s life, thought provoking, excellent characterizations - Picnic is one of the best films of the '50s with two of its brightest stars. Highly recommended.

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