Save Big On Open-Box & Used Products: Buy "Elmer Gantry” from Amazon Open-Box & Used and save 54% off the $14.98 list price. Product is eligible for Amazon's 30-day returns policy and Prime or FREE Shipping. See all offers from Amazon Open-Box & Used.
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Special Offers and Product Promotions
Top Customer Reviews
Lancaster, along with the film's producer-director-writer Richard Brooks, recognized the cinematic potential of the Prohibition era novel by America's first Nobel Prize winner for Literature, Minnesotan Sinclair Lewis. Gantry alternates as a poker playing, whisky drinking, brawling brothel habitue and a stern-faced preacher extolling the masses in packed tent services to toe the mark for the Lord or face the fires of hell.
Lancaster and Brooks spent six months in the director's office hashing out the story, two emotional creative forces hellbent on achieving the major success which resulted. The effort earned a Best Screenplay Oscar for Brooks. The story that was put on the screen in the 1960 classic involved non-stop action and biting irony, along with a needed touch of humor to lighten the story's heavy impact.
Lancaster's transitory existence is revealed in the first scene of the film, when he barely escapes with his life after being attacked by a group of hobos in the box car of a train on which he is riding.Read more ›
Elmer Gantry is one of the greatest, (in my opinion), movies ever made. Burt Lancaster won his only oscar for his dynamic manic performance as the charlatan with a heart of gold. His preaching style is bombastic, his personal life morally bankrupt. It's really eerie how he resembles a number of "Evangelists", that I have come across in person or on the television. Elmer Gantry truly represents a lot of the tele-evangelists that have come and gone over the last 50 years or so as does Sister Falconer.
Watching Burt Lancaster in full flight as he belts out his sermons and slides across the platform is a true joy to behold. It's a really great actor in his prime, and wonderfully entertaining.
All in all it's a great romp with fantastic dialogue, wonderful performances and it's controversial theme packs a punch even today when Tele-evangelist, whilst know less popular, are still racking in the big bucks and filling stadiums with willing followers. To the Christian, let this film be a lesson for all of us, there are wolves in sheeps clothing around.
Thanks for reading and enjoy and maybe be educated by this wonderful film.
The characters in this film have all the failings of human beings. Jean Simmons, acting the part of Sister Sharon, makes her seem almost like a saint. In the end she comes to resemble Joan of Arc. However, her image of purity is mixed with other factors. She has ambition and she has desire. This mixture makes her a rounded and interesting character. It would have been easy to make a film where Gantry and Sharon were mere charlatans, but then we would not care about them. Instead the film presents a complex but ultimately sympathetic view of faith. Even Arthur Kennedy's sceptical newspaperman admits that he wishes he could believe. Gantry may have many faults but he is a good man. He is kind to the prostitute, played by Shirley Jones, even after she has tried to destroy him. Thus, despite his lapses, he shows the strength and the quality of his faith.
The print used for this DVD is presented in its original ratio, it is clear and has very little apparent damage. The DVD also includes the original theatrical trailer.
Words can't express how great Burt Lancaster is in this film.
But like most truly significant movie classics, the supporting cast adds substance and strength to the overall impact of "Elmer Gantry." Shirley Jones is as sexy as any female that has appeared on the screen. Jean Simmons is spellbinding as Sister Sharon.
The film's highlight for me was the meeting involving Sister Sharon, Gantry, and William Morgan with a group of ministers negotiating the terms of a planned extended tent ministry in the fictious city of Zenith. Distrubing and embarassing -- always thought provoking.
A memorable film, worthy of repeated viewings and serious contemplation.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This movie takes me out of myself. Riveting performances by all but especially Burt Lancaster.Published 13 days ago by jacqueline m leonard
Arguably overlong, but ultimately affecting and thought provoking, powered by an amazingly dynamic and charismatic performance by Burt Lancaster. Read morePublished 1 month ago by K. Gordon
Hollywood does not make them like this anymore. Burt Lancaster at the top of his game. Jean Simmons was luminous. Shirley Jones against type. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Robert W. Gregory
This is a most excellent study in an entertaining format of the depth of the foundation, or lack thereof, of the American form of the Christian religion: not all of it, of course,... Read morePublished 2 months ago by N Mead Riche
Fine movie but not much like the book! I thought watching the movie would be as good as reading the book but there is alot that is missing from the movie, since to include it all... Read morePublished 3 months ago by handy designer