(George Stevens, US 1956, 201 min., 35mm)
The Canon. Land, money, and oil form the lifeblood of Giant. Considering the long shadow cast by James Dean, who died and became an instant legend soon after filming wrapped on this epic western, it’s easy to forget that the film’s real star is actually 23-year-old Liz Taylor. No longer the teenage ingenue, Liz plays Leslie, a headstrong southern belle who marries a powerful Texas rancher (Rock Hudson) but falls in love with a brooding young ranch hand (Dean). Giant’s somber color palette presents an expansive landscape where the difference between mud and oil can mean the difference between failure and fortune.
Note start time.