Blu-Ray Pick of the Week: "All That Heaven Allows" (1955)

A classic melodrama from the 1950's is out in a Criterion Collection edition blu-ray today, and you should really see this one, since it's so famous it's been remade twice. First in 1974 as Ali: Fear Eats the Soul, and then in 2002 as Far From Heaven, with Julianne Moore and Dennis Quaid. The funny thing is, all three if these movies are great in their own right, but the original Douglas Sirk version is still a fascinating movie to watch. With Jane Wyman as the older widow who falls in love with gardener Rock Hudson, it's a perfect snapshot of 1950's middle class American values, and anyone who thinks it makes them look good should get their eyes checked. Sirk was a subtle yet harsh critic of that society and used his outlook to create what seemed on the surface like soapy melodramas, but that pretty obviously (at least I think so) spelled out his critique of American shallowness. It's a really good movie, and you should see all three versions in succession, starting with this one.

Original 1955 Trailer: