Monday, January 6, 2014

Written on the Wind

1956 American Feature

Cast: Rock Hudson, Lauren Bacall, Robert Stack, Dorothy Malone, Robert Keith, Grant Williams, Harry Shannon, Edward Platt and Robert J. Wilke
Director: Douglas Sirk
Writer: George Zuckerman, based on the novel by Robert Wilder

Alcoholic playboy Kyle Hadley marries Lucy Moore, the woman secretly loved by his poor but hard-working best friend Mitch Wayne, who in turn is pursued by Kyle's nymphomaniac sister Marylee.


  • Internet Movie Database: 7.5/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - Critics: 81% / Audience: 75%
  • OMG rating: 7/10

  • DVD: Available
  • Soundtrack: Available
  • Book: Available


  • Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress (Malone); also nominated for Best Supporting Actor (Stack) and Original Song ("Written on the Wind").
  • Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Supporting Actress (Malone).

  • Robert Wilder's 1945 novel of Written on the Wind was a thinly disguised account of the real-life scandal involving torch singer Libby Holman and her husband, tobacco heir Zachary Smith Reynolds. Screenwriter George Zuckerman shifted the locale from North Carolina to Texas, made the source of the family wealth oil rather than tobacco, and changed all the character names.
  • This was the sixth of eight films Douglas Sirk made with Rock Hudson, and the most successful. Sirk reunited key cast members Rock Hudson, Robert Stack and Dorothy Malone two years later in The Tarnished Angels.
  • Douglas Sirk wanted it to be stated that Kyle Hadley was gay in the film. However this could not be mentioned directly due to the Hay's Code. Nevertheless it is still implied that Hadley is secretly in love with Mitch Wayne.
  • One of director Rainer Werner Fassbinder's favorite films; he referenced it frequently in his own work. 
  • Written on the Wind was released on DVD as part of The Criterion Collection in 2001.

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