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John Steinbeck’s novel was just two years old when director Lewis Milestone adapted it for the screen, and it remains the most potent treatment of the classic Depression-era story, not least because it depicts a period that the cast and crew had only recently lived through themselves, with none of the social safety-nets that their descendants take for granted. Burgess Meredith gives one of his finest performances as George, companion and protector of Lon Chaney Jr’s hulking, slow-witted Lennie. Both men are itinerant workers, trying to make ends meet while dreaming of a modest future tilling their own land - an ambition constantly undermined by Lennie’s inability to avoid getting into scrapes, usually over misunderstandings. It was tipped for multiple Oscars in the year when Gone with the Wind swept the board: two of the nominations went to Aaron Copland for the great American composer’s first original film score.
Sound: Dolby Digital
Running Time: 106 minutes
Production Year: 1939
Main Language: English