Day 4: Giant

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James Dean (source: washingtonexaminer.com)

Welcome to day 4 of our 30-day adventure. I’m in week three of self-isolation, and I’m starting to get a little stir crazy. I find myself wondering about next week, next month, or next year. What will it look like? When can I go home?

I think the pandemic is teaching us to slow down and take it day-by-day. There are always great films to watch and books to read. One day we will look back on this time and find something that makes us grateful. Whether it is time with family or time to reprioritize our life or cut out toxic people that have crept in.

I hope whatever it is you are doing during this time includes going through this film series. If you are, please comment below and share it with friends and family. If you aren’t, then why not? Writers spend a lot of time writing what they publish. It takes courage to let the world know your thought. Alright. Alright. Alright. Time to move on to our movie review of the day.

“Bick, you should have shot that fellow a long time ago. Now he’s too rich to kill.” – Giant, 1956

Texas. It’s big. “Giant” is more accurate. And that is the name of our film today. “Giant” is a 1956 film set in Texas starring Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudon, and James Dean. This was Dean’s last film because he was tragically killed in a race car accident during the post-production of “Giant.” Warner Brothers made him quit racing during the duration of filming to ensure the safety of one of their main characters.

“Giant” is one of my favorite classics of all time. You will never forget the story once you have watched it. Based on the best selling novel by Edna Ferber and adapted to film by George Stevens’ (Shane), “Giant” is a timeless story of money, family, and Texas-sized personality.  The film “…is arguably the most “Texas” of all the Texas-themed motion pictures.” It starts in Virginia with Bick Benedict Jr. (Rock Hudson) buying a stallion. He ends up also marrying the daughter of the Stallion’s owner, Leslie (Elizabeth Taylor).

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(Source: houstonchronicle.com)

When Leslie arrives at Bicks’ ranch (almost a million acres), his sister is all but happy he has a new woman in his life. There is an uneducated ranch hand, Jett (James Dean), who does not get along with Bick but likes Leslie. After an unfortunate turn of events, Jett now owns a small portion of the ranch. Jett strikes oil and becomes more prosperous than the Benedicts ever imagined and eventually becomes one of the richest men in Texas.

The heart of “Giant” is how unforgiveness, quarls, or animosity does not just disappear. We watch as two generations of Texans learn to survive with their neighbors. “Giant” pulls at your heartstrings, because as the viewer, it is so easy for us to see what they should do and how they should talk to each other.  Isn’t that how life is, though? From the outside, it is easy to say what each other should do, but it is never that simple. Change is what we observe the most. Times change, but people, mostly, remain the same.

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(source: differentdrummer.cc)

I truly believe “Giant” is one of the greatest stories to ever come out of Hollywood. It is full of love, frustration, sadness, and uncertainty. Isn’t that how life really is? Especially during this time in our world. Classic stars that are now Hollywood icons bring Texas to life.

Watch it. I hope you enjoy this classic as much as I do. It is one of the few classic Hollywood productions that can stand the test of time. It is relevant for our era and our generation.

Let me know what you think in the comments below. I hope everyone is staying safe and healthy. Am I the only one that says that after I talk to everyone now?

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