Seeing a classic with fresh eyes: Emilie reviews 'The Sound of Music'

16 May 2018 BY Emilie

4 mins
The Sound of Music © PARK CIRCUS ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
The Sound of Music © PARK CIRCUS ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

We sent reporter Emilie, 17, to a preview screening of The Sound of Music, which is re-released into cinemas from Friday 18 May. Emilie saw the film projected from a 70mm print just as it would have been shown when the film was first released in 1965! 

Read on below for her thoughts on rewatching a classic musical that has had a special place in her heart since childhood. 

The Sound of Music, the classic musical directed by Robert Wise, is an incredibly beautiful and heart-warming film which tells the story of the von Trapp family, set in the background of World War Two and leading up to the Nazi occupation of Austria. 

Perhaps the most distinct aspect of the film is the musical soundtrack, with well-known classic songs which have endured generations; the beauty of the music is absolutely transcendent and adds such life and spirit to the film. Furthermore the contrasting variety of emotions the soundtrack throughout the film provides adds such vitality - songs such as ‘Edelweiss' and ‘Climb Ev'ry Mountain' give tenderness and warmth to the film whilst songs such as ‘The Lonely Goatherd' and ‘Do-Re-Mi' will make audiences laugh and give the film a sense of innocence and fun.

Despite the copious number of cast members, mostly composed of the impeccably acted seven von Trapp children, the film is able to give each character an immense and detailed amount of depth and development, an impressive skill for even just one character, let alone so many! Even minor characters such as Rolfe are allowed their time to shine - in which we are able to witness the struggle between staying true to himself and the brainwashing of the Nazi empire, his character thus serving as a depiction of the struggle which many people underwent under Hitler's dictatorship. Of course, stand-out performances came from the lead protagonist Maria, played by Julie Andrews, and Captain von Trapp, played by Christopher Plummer. They both gave incredible performances as individuals but also as a couple, which made their love story truly believable and something for audiences to invest in. I was also particularly impressed with the youngest cast member Kym Karath who played Gretl. For such a young age, her performance was charmingly delivered and completely enamouring.

The Sound of Music © PARK CIRCUS ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
The Sound of Music © PARK CIRCUS ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

The cinematography of the film was undeniably exquisite; the DOP (Director of Photography) Ted D. McCord does an incredible job of capturing the beauty of Salzburg and the natural allure of the mountains and lakes, creating a character out of just the setting itself, an important feature within the film. Perhaps the biggest challenge of the film was keeping the sense of innocence and fun, represented through the children and their relationship with Maria, whilst also presenting the serious and hard hitting topic of war and the Nazi occupation, particularly towards the end of the film and the intensity that that presents. However, this is something that the director Robert Wise handled extremely well and he was able to strike a perfect balance between the two, a remarkably respectable skill.

Having re-watched this classic film again in 70mm and in the cinema, I experienced what it might have been like to watch the film when it first opened in 1965, and how the film would have originally been intended to be viewed. This added to the authenticity of the film, and added a whole new layer of detail to the film that I may not have noticed before when watching it at home. It was a truly immersive experience and something I would really recommend for anyone who has the chance.

Watch Emilie's instant reaction vlog here

Never seen the film, or want to watch it again with the big screen experience?  The Sound of Music will be showing in cinemas from 18 May. 

You can watch a digitally restored 4K version, and in selected cinemas you can see it from a 70mm print, like the one that Emilie saw.  Find a screening near you here

Young Reporter Emilie

Emilie, Young Reporter

Emilie is currently an A-level student with a place to study Film Production at university next year. She enjoys all aspects of film but particularly directing and writing, and she has made several of her own short films including one for Channel 4's ‘Random Acts'.

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