Old Man & The Sea [Import]
The classic Ernest Hemingway novel about man battling nature and the demons within himself is adapted admirably in this 1958 film starring the legendary Spencer Tracy. Playing the fisherman who goes on an intense and futile quest as he contemplates his own nature, Tracy turns in a spellbinding performance of understated power. He plays an itinerant Cuban fisherman whose luck at catching his prey has been poor of late, until he becomes embroiled in an intense pursuit of a giant marlin and in the process must confront his own frailties. Though the visual aspect of the film seems dated, Tracy is more than enough reason to see this effort at bringing one of the modern classics of literature to life on the screen. --Robert Lane
Other: "Hemingway, the Legend and the Sea" (3:02) --This text refers to the DVD edition.
Top Customer Reviews
Some criticize The Old Man and the Sea for dragging on, but the character development only makes it more interesting to find out what happens. The main character, Santiago, is modest and keeps up hope despite his circumstance. His willingness to keep on, even despite his outcome, is moving.
Hemingway's style of writing also creates a detailed environment. The plot may be too straightforward but what it lacks, it makes up for rich detail. The way Hemingway depicts man's battle with nature makes it a good book to read.
The symbolism in the book is hard to read at first. As the book goes on, Hemingway uses more and more words that link Santiago to Christ and are very hard to miss. During the old man's battle with the fish, fishing cable cuts his palms. When carrying a mast across his shoulders in the village, images of Christ's march to Calgary can be related.
I would suggest this book to almost anyone over fifteen. The book is short (around a hundred pages) and straightforward. Although it has such a simple plot, the symbolism is a little more difficult to understand. Writing in short declarative sentences, Hemingway's style of writing makes it harder to read.
On the eighty-fifth day Santiago sets out alone and after a while he hooks a huge marlin. Most of the rest of the movie is about Santiago's struggle with the marlin and his battles with attacking sharks which are trying to eat the big fish. The story is also about Santiago's relationship with the boy who cares for the old man both before and after his epic voyage. The boy is indebted to Santiago for all that he has learned from him about fishing. Santiago is a widower and childless.
Much of the film shows Santiago alone at sea struggling with the marlin. In other words the movie is mostly focused on Spencer Tracy who does an excellent job of holding the viewer's interest.
In spite of Tracy's great performance, however, I still think that Anthony Quinn would have been a better choice for the role of Santiago - except for the fact that Quinn was fifteen years younger than Tracy.
The script closely follows Hemingway's novel which makes the movie even more remarkable.
Most recent customer reviews
What can you say really?. AS good as a book can get on film.Especially for its day. Need three more words.Published on April 12 2013 by Jan Jesser
Hemingway decide to make an apparent simple story when in reality , he would write one of his most emblematic and passionate works.
Santiago is a simple man . Read more
After the film came out in 1958 Hemingway was quoted as saying Spencer Tracy was "too fat" to play the part. Read morePublished on May 4 2002
I was 8 years old when my Mother and I went to see this movie. I remember how determined this man was to land a fish, any fish, not just a big one. Read morePublished on Jan. 12 2002 by Chet Ragsdale
Even though I thought this movie was interesting I found it a little boring. I was hoping it was going to be more of a battle between the old man and the fish. Read morePublished on Sept. 25 1999
In these times where ignorance (high school high is an example) is produced for the public to consume, and special effects are the driving force in many movies, it is very pleasing... Read morePublished on May 18 1999
This is a timeless tale of a passion unbroken by the rust of time. The boy in the movie has a heart so strong in a town so poor. Read morePublished on Jan. 12 1999