Gunga Din- (1939) - (DVD) - (library)
This is one of my all time favourite movies. I have watched it numerous times. Recently I read a graphic adaptation of the Kipling poem and it gave me a desire to see the movie again. I am a fan of the poem itself and Cary Grant is my ultimate favourite actor ever. This is a classic movie and before I borrowed it from the library I checked to see if there was a Criterion DVD as I would have bought a copy if there was but, alas, there are no deluxe editions available. However, this copy does have a couple of extra perks. My son watched the movie with me and he really enjoyed it. He is not a fan of b/w, does not understand it but I warned him beforehand and told him it was an adventure/comedy so he was game. Well, it was a big hit with him, I am pleased to say. He laughed at Grant's antics, loved the fisticuffs and battle scenes and had to leave the room at the climax when the tension got too much for him. (He's very sensitive that way). On top of all that at the end he started to talk about Gunga Din, the character, and I was able to ask him questions and he explained on his own the significance of why this minor character is the most important part of the movie. I was very proud of him. Anyway, the movie is very poignant and though there are people who can't get past the 1939 representation of British colonialism, if you watch the movie past the halfway point you will see how powerful the dialogue is at times. It is portraying an attitude, while at the same time being very much against that attitude. It is done with subtlety and is a compelling movie. One of the best of all time, imho!! The extras on this DVD include an ancient b/w Porky Pig cartoon, The Film Fan, and a short "Making of" documentary with some excellent footage of the director's home movies made while filming, and interviews with his son and Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. himself!