Kamis, 15 Maret 2012

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

theatrical poster
Directed by Frank Capra
Produced by Frank Capra
Screenplay by Sidney Buchman
Story by Lewis R. Foster
Narrated by Colin James Mackey
Starring Jean Arthur
James Stewart
Harry Carey
Claude Rains
Music by Dimitri Tiomkin
Cinematography Joseph Walker
Editing by Al Clark
Gene Havlick
Distributed by Columbia Pictures
Release date(s) October 17, 1939
Running time 129 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $1.5 million
1945 re-release theatrical poster
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington is a 1939 American drama film starring Jean Arthur and James Stewart about one man's effect on American politics. It was directed by Frank Capra and written by Sidney Buchman, based on Lewis R. Foster's unpublished story.[1] Mr. Smith Goes to Washington was controversial when it was released, but also successful at the box office, and made Stewart a major movie star.[2] The film features a bevy of well-known supporting actors and actresses, among them Claude Rains, Edward Arnold, Guy Kibbee, Thomas Mitchell and Beulah Bondi.
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington was nominated for 11 Academy Awards, winning for Best Original Story.[3] In 1989, the Library of Congress added the movie to the United States National Film Registry, for being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant."
The governor of an unnamed western state, Hubert "Happy" Hopper (Guy Kibbee), has to pick a replacement for recently deceased U.S. Senator Sam Foley. His corrupt political boss, Jim Taylor (Edward Arnold), pressures Hopper to choose his handpicked stooge, while popular committees want a reformer. The governor's children want him to select Jefferson Smith (James Stewart), the head of the Boy Rangers. Unable to make up his mind between Taylor's stooge and the reformer, Hopper decides to flip a coin. When it lands on edge – and next to a newspaper story on one of Smith's accomplishments – he chooses Smith, calculating that his wholesome image will please the people while his naïveté will make him easy to manipulate.
The Junior Senator Smith is taken under the wing of the publicly esteemed, but secretly crooked, Senator Joseph Paine (Claude Rains), who was Smith's late father's oldest and best friend. Smith develops an immediate attraction to the senator's daughter, Susan (Astrid Allwyn). At Senator Paine's home, Smith has a conversation with Susan, fidgeting and bumbling, entranced by the young sophisticate. The unforgiving Washington press quickly tarnishes Smith's reputation with ridiculous front page pictures and headlines branding him a bumpkin.
Paine, to keep Smith busy, suggests he propose a bill. With the help of his secretary, Clarissa Saunders (Jean Arthur), Smith comes up with a bill to authorize a federal government loan to buy some land in his home state for a national boys' camp, to be paid back by youngsters across America. Donations pour in immediately. However, the proposed campsite is already part of a dam-building graft scheme included in an appropriations bill framed by the Taylor political machine and supported by Senator Paine.
Unwilling to crucify the worshipful Smith so that their graft plan will go through, Paine tells Taylor he wants out, but Taylor reminds him that Paine is in power primarily through Taylor's influence. Through Paine, the machine accuses Smith of trying to profit from his bill by producing fraudulent evidence that Smith owns the land in question. Smith is too shocked by Paine's betrayal to defend himself, and runs away.
Saunders has come to believe in him, and talks him into launching a filibuster to postpone the appropriations bill and prove his innocence on the Senate floor just before the vote to expel him. While Smith talks non-stop, his constituents try to rally around him, but the entrenched opposition is too powerful, and all attempts are crushed. Owing to the influence of what even Taylor admits is a "machine", newspapers and radio stations in Smith's home state, on Taylor's orders, refuse to report what Smith has to say and even twist the facts against the Senator. An effort by the Boy Rangers to spread the news results in vicious attacks on the children by Taylor's minions.
Although all hope seems lost, the senators begin to pay attention as Smith approaches utter exhaustion. Paine has one last card up his sleeve: he brings in bins of letters and telegrams from Smith's home state from people demanding his expulsion. Nearly broken by the news, Smith finds a small ray of hope in a friendly smile from the President of the Senate (Harry Carey). Smith vows to press on until people believe him, but immediately collapses in a faint. Overcome with guilt, Paine leaves the Senate chamber and attempts to commit suicide by shooting himself. When he is stopped, he bursts back into the Senate chamber, loudly confesses to the whole scheme, and affirms Smith's innocence.
CAST:
James Stewart as Jefferson Smith
Jean Arthur as Clarissa Saunders or "Saunders"
Claude Rains as Senator Joseph Harrison Paine
Edward Arnold as Jim Taylor
Guy Kibbee as Governor Hubert "Happy" Hopper
Thomas Mitchell as Diz Moore
Eugene Pallette as Chick McGann
Beulah Bondi as Ma Smith
H.B. Warner as Senator Agnew
Harry Carey as President of the Senate
Astrid Allwyn as Susan Paine
Alec Craig as Speaker Hi

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