Splendor in the Grass
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1961's premiere "date" movie represented the screen debut of Warren Beatty. Set in the 1920s, William Inge's screenplay concerns the superheated romance between working-class high schooler Natalie Wood and rich kid Beatty. Trying their best to keep their relationship from going "all the way," Beatty and Wood go through a series of unsatisfying interim romances. The troubled Wood attempts suicide and is sent to a mental institution, while Beatty impregnates freewheeling waitress Zohra Lampert. Wood and Beatty still carry a torch for one another, but circumstances… More
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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 85%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"A complicated film that never really successfully yokes together the themes of money-making and sexuality, it reveals both Kazan's operatic sensibility and his inability to follow an argument rigorously through."
‑ , Time Out
"Splendor in the Grass is a prestigious, top-of-the-line, sensitively-handled melodramatic literalization of the axiom "If you touch yourself too much, you'll go crazy.""
‑ Eric Henderson, Slant Magazine
"a sometimes-devastating portrait of youth culture on the brink"
‑ Walter Chaw, Film Freak Central
"Splendor in the Grass (1961) is another of director Elia Kazan's dramatic, hyperbolic films with daring and controversial content for its times - sexual repression"
‑ Tim Dirks, Tim Dirks' The Greatest Films
"This romantic sudser is darker than those of its day, as it shockingly deals with matters Hollywood had previously kept under wraps."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"Youth exploitation pictures were all the rage at the time, and while this is better than some in execution and intent, it's still exactly that."
‑ , TV Guide's Movie Guide
"Probably Wood's finest hour"
‑ James Sanford, Kalamazoo Gazette
"A smug sneer toward all the squares."
‑ David Cornelius, DVDTalk.com
"One of Kazan's two or three mastrpieces, this powerful small-town film examines growing pains, respressed sexuality, and social hypocrisy, featuring Warren Beatty, in an astonishing screen debut, and Natalie Wood, at their very best."
‑ Emanuel Levy, EmanuelLevy.Com
"Watchable but not great."
‑ Christopher Null, Filmcritic.com
More reviews for Splendor in the Grass on Rotten Tomatoes