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Days of Heaven-Movie Review *** 03/16/2011

Posted by Films to consider in American, Classic film, Drama, Emotional Drama, Movies, Romance.

Days of Heaven (American) 1978

Among other awards and nominations:
Winner, Best Cinematography, Academy Awards; also, Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards and National Society of Film Critics Awards, USA
Winner, Best Director (Malick), Cannes Film Festival; also National Society of Film Critics Awards, USA
Winner, Best Film National Board of Review, USA
Nominated, Best Costumes; Best Original Score; Best Sound, Academy Awards
Winner, Best Foreign Actor; Best Screenplay, David di Donatello Awards

Directed by Terence Malick
Starring Richard Gere, Sam Shepard, Brooke Adams, and Linda Manz

In the early 1900s, unmarried couple Bill (Gere) and Abby (Adams) flee Chicago when Bill gets into trouble and loses his job on the docks. They pass themselves off as brother and sister and, along with Bill’s younger sister Linda (Manz), travel across the country working as farm laborers. At their latest farm, wealthy owner (Shepard) has learned he has only about a year to live. He falls for Abby and, with Bill urging her on, she agrees to marry him.

The narrator is the young sister; she tells the story in an easygoing style that brings empathy to the characters. This is one of Sam Shepard’s earliest acting gigs, and Richard Gere’s first leading role.

Deservedly, the film’s cinematography received many awards (see above), as did the musical score. The cinematography does more to move the story along than does dialogue or even narration. Look for the remastered Criterion Collection version, as this is considered visually superior to the earlier DVD.

94 min. Rated PG.



1. MaryAnne - 03/16/2011

Did you know that this is possibly my favorite film in the universe?

Films to consider - 03/16/2011

Do the young Messrs. Gere and Shepard have anything to do with that?


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