Four classic multi-award-winning dramas.
In 'All the King's Men' (1949), ambitious politician Willie Stark (Broderick Crawford) comes fresh from America's deep south to find popularity as a reformer, but as his career takes off he gradually becomes corrupted by his newly-acquired power. based on Robert Penn Warren's novel, which itself was a disguised account of the life and career of Louisiana governor Huey Long, the film won oscars for best picture, best actor (Broderick Crawford) and best supporting actress (Mercedes McCambridge).
'From Here to Eternity' (1953) is Fred Zinnemann's classic drama about Pearl Harbor on the eve of the fateful Japanese attack. private Prewitt (Montgomery Clift) is newly arrived at the military base, and has already fallen foul of his superiors due to his refusal to box on the company team. given the worst duties as a result, Prewitt is befriended by Angelo Maggio (Frank Sinatra), a young soldier who is himself persecuted by the Italian-hating Sergeant Fatso (Ernest Borgnine). meanwhile, Sergeant Warden (Burt Lancaster), Prewitt's superior, treads on dangerous ground when he allows himself to get caught up in affair with an officer's wife (Deborah Kerr). The film won eight oscars, and features one of the most famous scenes in cinema: Burt Lancaster and Deborah Kerr's kiss in the Hawaiian surf.
'To Kill a Mockingbird' (1962), based on the pulitzer prize-winning novel by Harper Lee, is set in 1930s Alabama. the children Scout (Mary Badham) and Jem (Phillip Alford) play in the street, while their lawyer Father Atticus Finch (Gregory Peck) defends a black man accused of raping a young white woman. the controversial nature of the trial, taking place in the racist culture of the deep south, leads the local townsfolk to turn against Finch and sees his family become the victim of a series of terror attacks. the film won oscars for Peck and screenwriter Horton Foote.
In 'Harvey' (1950), Elwood P. Dowd (James Stewart) and his best friend Harvey are inseparable. they go everywhere together, spreading warmth and kindness throughout all the bars in town. the only trouble is that harvey is a 'pooka' - a six foot-plus rabbit that only Elwood can see. when Elwood and Harvey embarass the former's social-climbing sister Veta Louise (an oscar-winning Josephine Hull) once too often, she finally opts to get Elwood the treatment she thinks he needs, and arranges to have him installed in the local mental asylum. however, Harvey's unseen but ever-felt presence ensures that all does not go according to plan.