Legends of the Fall


What is Legends of the Fall about?

Director Edward Zwick

Director Edward Zwick

Set at the start of the 20th century, an U.S. Army Colonel disheartened by the treatment of Native Americans by the government retires and raises his three sons in Montana.  His sons, Alfred, Tristan and Samuel are all very different from each but are remarkably close.  Over time though, the family grows apart, exacerbated by WWI, forbidden love and the hardships of the land.  Told in part by letters each family member has written over the years.

Directed by Edward Zwick.  Starring Brad Pitt, Anthony Hopkins, Julia Ormond, Aidan Quinn and Henry Thomas.


How come I think it’s great?

I have three older brothers myself so I can relate to a film about sibling warfare.  Although I don’t think any of my brothers or I would go as far as they did in this movie.  Also, I like this film because of Brad Pitt’s character Tristan.  Tristan is untamed, unafraid, and undone throughout most of this feature.  Although the love he has for the people around him is unwavering, tends to hurt them nonetheless and it’s hard not to like him.  He’s an anit-hero and I think all guys would like to see themselves as Tristan, running free like a bronco (USA) / brumby (Aus).


Why is it boycotted?

I know this film is 20 years old. Critics haven’t bashed this film as much as other films that I think are great.  And, this film did well in the box office.  It’s on the under-rated list because I’m near obsessed with this film.  I’ve seen it 100 times and I’ll watch it 100 more.  But I seem to find when I ask people about Legends of the Fall, they either haven’t seen it or they saw it once and forget what it’s about.  Which infuriates me.  I don’t get it.


What was the best scene?  And what does it accomplish?

I love the scene where Samuel, the youngest brother, sings to the theme song of the movie.  I’ve learned the piano somewhat and could play this song – I don’t think I could now.  But it’s a beautiful tune and you should listen to it.  With this scene also, the father is heard speaking about his happiness having his three sons under the same roof again.  Melancholy.


What is the best line?

One Stab played by Gordon Tootoosis, when talking about Tristan at the start of the film.

“Some people hear their own inner voices with great clearness and they live by what they hear. Such people become crazy, or they become legends.”

What is the general message that it sends?

Family counts.  And learn to forgive.


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