We're a bit behind schedule, but we do have a film of the month! This month's film is A Face in the Crowd, the story of a nationally renowned television celebrity, loved by millions and revered as a pop culture hero. But behind closed doors, this TV Star is someone his loving fans would never recognize.
Year: 1957 (Not Rated)
Directed by Elia Kazan, Written by Bud Schulberg.
Starring Andy Griffith, Patricia Neal, and Walter Matthau.
Setting: America, 1950's.
Content warning: Some implied sexuality. Drunkenness, abusive personality traits in Lonesome Rhodes (Andy Griffith's character).
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
1. Celebrity Worship. Celebrities can do no wrong. We love them for who they are on television, but if we truly knew the person behind the star, we may change our minds.
2. The interesting connection between celebrities and politicians. There is a great, great scene from this film that is available on You Tube which demonstrates this connection beautifully. If your political career is suffering, just enlist the endorsement of a beloved celebrity! (Note: We do not necessarily endorse the opinion implied by the title given to this clip.)
3. Television as an opiate of the masses. There is power in the media. Click here for a profound clip from the film which claims: "In TV we have the greatest instrument for mass persuasion in the entire history of the world!"
4. Portrait of a "player." Lonesome Rhodes is a smooth-talking ladies' man who ends up defrauding the only woman who was truly good to him. While we cannot control what others do to us, we certainly have control over the choices we make as far as getting involved with people like this. Ladies, if people have warned you to stay away from a particluar man, don't be so arrogant as to think that you can change him. Only the Holy Spirit can change a person!
In 2008, A Face in the Crowd was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".
The film marked the debut of actress Lee Remick, who plays a teenage baton-twirling champion from Arkansas.
This is one of the most riveting performances you'll ever see by Andy Griffith!