The hills are just coming alive

This sounds like it should be one of Harry Hutton‘s Killer Facts but did you know that until tonight there’s never been a full stage production of The Sound Of Music performed in Austria? On top of that, the film has never been shown in Austrian cinemas (and only once on Austrian TV).

Which is a roundabout way of suggesting that you read this article from the Independent on that first production and what The Sound Of Music represents in Austria’s 20th century history.

2 thoughts on “The hills are just coming alive

  1. Well, as an Austrian, I can only say that IMHO the dislike of the film/musical has less to do with evocations of a painful past – we have had that rammed down on us over and over again – but more with esthetic aspects, particularly the grating INAUTHENTICITY of the whole thing. The “Austrian folk songs” which bear no resemblance to the real thing, the totally American/Hollywood air of the whole film – it’s all right as a film, I suppose, but it is just so very artificial and to somebody grown up in Austria, rings false in every way.

    BTW, one of my aunts knew one of the daughters in this family, and according to her, all was not sweetness and light in reality – this daughter heartily disliked her stepmother, and described the book on which the film was based as quite misleading.

  2. I grwe up in Lake Wobegon, and people don’t especially like Garrison Keeler there either. Much less the movie Fargo — which is about Minnesota, not Fargo, though I have family in Fargo too. The people in Fargo REALLY don’t like the movie, pointing out that it is really about Minnesota.

    Both are very accurate and basically affectionate caricatures of the place, but people who live there and talk like that don’t think they’re funny. They think they’re normal.

    Sinclair Lewis was not especially admired in Sauk Centre either (10 miles from where I grew up), but they now have a very nice interpretive center there with many Lewis mementos, including Japanese prints by Hokusai.

    I think of the Fargo movie as the anti-Pulp Fiction. The bad guys aren’t larger-than-life, charismatic, sexy guys but a bunch or really boring, pitiful, annoying losers. And the victims are flawed and mundane, but basically nice, and they win the the end.

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