God's Little Acre (1958) torrent download

God's Little Acre

1958

Action / Comedy / Drama / Romance

6.6

Synopsis

A poor farmer is obsessed with finding gold on his land supposedly buried by his grandfather. To find it he conveniently moves a marker out of his way that designates the land on which it rests as as God's Little Acre, where anything that comes from the ground will go to God's work. Eventually he abducts an albino to help him find the gold. Meanwhile, his daughter-in-law is suspected of fooling around with a labor activist out of work since the mill closed, and a local political hopeful actively seeks his daughter's hand in marriage.

Director

Anthony Mann

Cast

Robert Ryan
as Ty Ty Walden
Jack Lord
as Buck Walden
Tina Louise
as Griselda Walden, Ty Ty's daughter-in-law
Aldo Ray
as Bill Thompson
Buddy Hackett
as Pluto Swint, Sheriff Candidate
Fay Spain
as Darlin' Jill
Vic Morrow
as Shaw Walden

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by budmassey 10 /10

Classic transgressive fiction.

The controversy that surrounded this movie, along with the scandal associated with the novel upon which it is based, may not have added up to box office success, but the film has become a classic nonetheless.

Author Erskine Caldwell and Viking Press, his publisher, were actually charged and tried for obscenity for releasing God's Little Acre in 1933 after pressure by a New York literary board who wanted the book censored. A quarter of a century later, in 1958, when the movie was released, it was actually banned in some theaters and audiences under eighteen years of age were prohibited from viewing what were perceived to be numerous obscene scenes throughout. The on screen sexual exploits are rather tame by today's standards, but the sexual tension of men standing and watching naked women pushed the limits in its day.

Robert Ryan stars as Ty Ty Walden, a farmer who believes there's gold buried on his land. A devout man, he has set aside a small plot of land promising God anything that comes from it. With typical human frailty, he is prone to move God's Little Acre whenever he fears it may contain his fortune, an obvious allegory for the shifting faith we all suffer.

Ty Ty has singlehandedly raised three hot headed sons and a lovely daughter, who is his treasure and, it turns out, an almost irresistible sexual force. Throw in Grisleda, the sultry wife of one of the sons, and her ex-lover, Will, and a subtext of complex sexual entanglements and betrayals lead to tragedy and eventual destruction of the family.

Caldwell, by showing Ty Ty destroying his farm in search of quick riches, meant to comment on the destructive attitudes of the South with regard to the land. Although Ty Ty could have turned a profit at any time by farming, he does everything but farm. Eventually he enlists the aid of an albino, played by a delightfully young Michael Landon, whom Ty Ty believes has magical divining powers, and demands that he find the gold, which, of course, he cannot do, since there is none. Vic Morrow, Jack Lord and Buddy Hackett round out the supporting cast, as the entire family living around the edges of Ty Ty's dream.

The real story, however, revolves around Louise, stunning in her first major role, and Aldo Ray, a classic machismo who put the "man" in leading man. Their adulterous tryst generates more heat than the oppressive dog days of the southern summer. You've got to see the water pump scene, if you can find a copy that hasn't melted from heat of it.

Originally, the novel was intended to dramatize the strike and eventual shutdown of a textile mill in Gastonia, North Carolina. Caldwell thought of the novel God's Little Acre as a proletarian manifesto that would call attention to the plight of non-unionized textile workers, lintheads, as they were called, in the Depression Era South. That the film got made at all in the age of McCarthyism is astounding. In fact, the nominal screenwriter, Philip Yordon, was actually a front for the real screenwriter, Ben Maddow, who had been blacklisted in the Hollywood Red scare.

The Marxist ideas of Caldwell's novel are mostly lost in the film adaptation, although discerning viewers will see their remains in the brutish Will's desperate attempt to seize control of and reopen the textile mill on which the entire local economy depends. Without giving too much of the story away, this is classic transgressive fiction in which following the dark side of life leads inevitably to destruction.

Although the movie is a uniquely satisfying experience, please don't let this classic prevent you from reading the book by Erskine Caldwell. The novel, one of the best selling in history, is a literary touchstone and deserves a good read, and reading is in danger of becoming extinct. But do watch this movie, when it's hot and you're feeling a bit nostalgic.

Reviewed by lee_eisenberg 8 /10

spinning outta control, Southern style

Apparently, when "God's Little Acre" first came out, much of it was cut for the theatrical release. Watching the unedited version, one can see why (needless to say, it's all pretty tame to us in the 21st century). Part of it is Tina Louise's very presence - I mean, what man wouldn't want to be stranded on an island with Ginger Grant? - but there's also a scene where Buddy Hackett works a pump for a woman in a bathtub (if that scene isn't a double entendre, then I don't know what is!).

As for the movie itself, this story of a Georgia farmer (Robert Ryan) getting convinced that thar's gold in them thar holes in his garden does quite well. The idea of him tearing up his garden is an effective parallel for how the family gets torn up in the process. As for his friendship with the African-American guy, it's probably debatable whether they were sugar-coating race relations, or if they were encouraging tolerance. There could even be debates about how the movie portrays the South in general (the characters do come across as hicks).

But overall, I recommend this flick. Usually, it would sort of weaken the movie to know that some of the cast members later became famous on TV shows - especially since one was known for seducing romantically incompetent men on a certain island - but they all do very well here. This is certainly a movie worth seeing. And the theme song will probably get stuck in your head. Also starring Aldo Ray, Jack Lord, Fay Spain, Vic Morrow and Michael Landon.

Reviewed by Ajtlawyer 6 /10

worth watching

Robert Ryan is Ty Ty, a Southern cotton farmer and a somewhat crazed version of Jed Clampett. Ty Ty has spent 15 years digging holes on his farm, trying to find the gold he believes his grandfather buried there. The farm is going to waste and everyone on the farm seems to have lost any purpose for living other than trying to find the gold. Ty Ty had dedicated a piece of the farm, "God's Little Acre" to God and his church with the promise that anything found on that acre will go to God. Of course, whenever he feels anything really might be found on it, he moves the acre and tries to cheat God out of His share.

The movie has two sub-plots with Buddy Hackett, of all people, as a candidate for sheriff who is desperately in love with one of Ty Ty's daughters. The water pump and bathtub scene between the two of them is so full of eroticism and innuendo that it about melts the screen. Ty Ty's son, Buck (played by Jack Lord), is married to Griselda (Tina Louise in her movie debut) and Griselda is a magnificent sight to behold, the camera lingering over her all natural bosom so often that the temperature spikes every time she's on screen. Buck is obsessed that Griselda still has a thing for his brother-in-law, Will (Aldo Ray) who is on his own desperate mission to try and re-open the mill which has shut down and thrown the entire valley out of work.

Buck's suspicions are not without foundation because whenever Griselda and Will are together, the heat is enormous. I found the first half of the movie somewhat hard to follow but it is an interesting story. Is Ty Ty a man of faith or is he just caught up in an obsession? It is evident that the search for the gold is what is really important to him, not finding it.

Two performances stand out---Robert Ryan is very good as the demented Ty Ty and Tina Louise is excellent as the sensuous Griselda. Tina received a Golden Globe after this movie came out and her career seemed poised to really take off. She showed an acting ability and charisma which was sorely wasted on "Gilligan's Island" years later.

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