SHANE
1953, Paramount, 118 min, USA, Dir: George Stevens

George Stevens infuses the Western genre with mythic grandeur in this timeless classic. Alan Ladd is at his most iconic as the title character, an ex-gunfighter forced out of retirement when a family of homesteaders (Van Heflin, Jean Arthur, Brandon de Wilde) comes under attack by a vicious rancher’s hired guns. Jack Palance is one of the most threatening villains in movie history, and the film itself is both a summing up of the Western genre and a sign of things to come in later masterworks such as UNFORGIVEN. One of the most influential films ever made - and one of the most entertaining. Loyal Griggs won an Oscar for Best Cinematography.


THE MORE THE MERRIER
1943, Sony Repertory, 104 min, USA, Dir: George Stevens

Jean Arthur reluctantly sublets half her apartment to retired millionaire Charles Coburn - who promptly sublets half of his half to dreamy soldier Joel McCrea! Coburn won an Oscar for his inspired performance in this captivating film, which also was nominated for Best Picture, Director, Actress, Story and Screenplay.


GIANT
1956
2011, Warner Bros., 201 min, USA, Dir: George Stevens

Rock Hudson, Elizabeth Taylor and James Dean (in his last role) star in this sprawling account of the rise of a Texas oil family. Stevens moves back and forth between epic social commentary and intimate family melodrama with ease, and Boris Levin’s stunning art direction is a wonder to behold on the big screen. Stevens won the Academy Award for Best Director.


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