Tag Archives: Anne Bancroft

Film: Movies of 1962

Robert Mitchum, Henry Fonda, and John Wayne led the all-star cast of The Longest Day. The year 1962 also featured musicals (The Music Man), westerns (The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance), and dramas (The Miracle Worker). Uploaded by torrentbutler.eu.

I have to acknowledge up front that the highest-grossing film of the year was also the Academy Award winner: Lawrence of Arabia. A British film. But the Yanks had a memorable year as well, in fact we produced some terrific films in 1962. To wit:

The Longest Day — John Wayne, Henry Fonda, Robert Mitchum, and a huge international cast storm the beaches of Normandy on D-Day.

To Kill a Mockingbird  — Gregory Peck wins Best Actor portraying Atticus Finch in the classic film version of Harper Lee’s novel.

Whatever Happened to Baby Jane  — A horror film with an elderly Bette Davis and Joan Crawford. That’s scary.

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The Music Man — When musicals still could draw crowds, this faithful version of the Meredith Wilson show starred Robert Preston and Shirley Jones.

Mutiny on the Bounty — Neither the first nor the last time this story has been brought to the screen, but with Marlon Brando and Trevor Howard, probably the best.

Gypsy — Another great musical. With lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and music by Jule Styne, how could it be less than a hit?

The Miracle Worker — It started on television in the anthology series Playhouse 90, then went to Broadway, and Anne Bancroft and Patty Duke reprised their stage roles in the film. Bancroft received Best Actress and Duke earned Best Supporting Actress.

Advise and Consent — Otto Preminger brought this Pulitzer Prize-winning novel to the big screen with Henry Fonda in the lead.

Birdman of Alcatraz — Burt Lancaster in the story of the prisoner who actually spent most of his time at Leavenworth. Go figure.

Cape Fear — Robert Mitchum terrorizes Gregory Peck’s family.

Dr. No — Sean Connery makes an international splash in the very first James Bond movie. If I remember correctly, a few more have been made since.

How the West Was Won — More remarkable now as one of the last of the epic movies with a huge all-star cast.

Lolita — This story scandalized the public in 1962. One of Stanley Kubrick’s first movies, with James Mason and Sue Lyon.

The Manchurian Candidate — Frank Sinatra proves he really could act in this Cold War thriller.

The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance — One of the great John Ford’s last Westerns, starring Jimmy Stewart.

That Touch of Mink — Not particularly memorable, but it starred Cary Grant  and Doris Day in a romantic comedy, and that’s enough.


Film: The Graduate

These famous legs don't actually belong to Anne Bancroft, but to actress Linda Gray. Uploaded by projectorhead.wordpress.com.

Beyond a memorable script, a terrific cast, a visionary director, and perfect music, some movies just happen to fully embody the Zeitgeist of its era. So it was with The Graduate, a masterful movie that perfectly captured the freedom and angst of the late 60s.

The script came courtesy of Calder Willingham and Buck Henry. Dustin Hoffman made his major movie debut, and was perfect as Benjamin Braddock, while Anne Bancroft portrayed Mrs. Robinson with the perfect blend of sultriness and ennui. It was director Mike Nichols’ second film, following the startling Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf. That’s a pretty auspicious beginning. And the music of Simon and Garfunkel was expertly woven through the film, a soundtrack not just for the movie, but for the times.

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I love behind-the-scenes movie trivia, so here are a couple of things about The Graduate I found interesting. Dustin Hoffman was 30 and Anne Bancroft was 36 when the movie was made, but Hoffman looked so young and Bancroft so mature that they carried off cross-generational lovers. And the legs in the famous movie poster, beyond which we see Hoffman, didn’t belong to Bancroft, but to a young model – Linda Gray, who went on to play Sue Ellen Ewing in Dallas.

The Graduate was selected as the number seven movie in the American Film Institute’s “100 Years…100 Movies” program. Two lines from the movie also are among the most famous in film history: “Mrs. Robinson, you’re trying to seduce me, aren’t you?” was selected as number 63 by the AFI and number 17 by Premiere magazine. And “Plastics” was the AFI’s number 42 quote.