Love and scandal are the best sweeteners of tea. —Henry Fielding

18 June 2016

On the Beach


This is superb. It's brilliantly shot, and Ava Gardner and Fred Astaire are mind-blowingly good. This is also a movie that pulls absolutely no punches about nuclear war. It avoids sentimentality. It steers clear of redemption and utopia. It is simply elegantly and excellently directed. (And I love Anthony Perkins, too.)

I've actually seen much of Stanley Kramer's output as a director (Guess Who's Coming to Dinner, The Defiant Ones, Ship of Fools, It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World, Judgment at Nuremberg), but I haven't really thought of him as an auteur or of his entire body of work at all before. That was foolish of me. This is obviously a man who directed quite a few awesome pictures about the twentieth century's worst atrocities.