I had a deep desire to watch this film seeing as I love classic musicals as well as classics in general, it is my mother's all-time favourite film and I have been told previously by other relatives and friends that recommended it to me and… my God! Am I pleased or what?! The Sound Of Music is one of the single most perfect pieces of art and entertainment that I have ever laid my eyes on in my life. From the very start to the end, I was almost in an enchanting world that was a bit like the enchanting world of Disney. Actually, now thinking about it, The Sound Of Music would have made an awesome Disney film. Then again, if Disney did it, it might not turned out as awesome and successful as it has become.
The Sound Of Music really does take you into a world of pure beauty that doesn't seem like it is from this world. It seems more like from a world that nobody has ever been to and nobody ever will go to again after this film. Ever since watching it, I now have a dream goal to visit Salzburg, Austria and I think was the most perfect place for The Sound Of The Music to be filmed! Like most musicals, the songs within are just pure magic and give you goose-bumps and chills down your spine as you watch it especially in the songs "The Sound Of Music", "Maria", "My Favourite Things" and "Sixteen Going On Seventeen". I just cannot choose what my favourite song is from the film because they are all so brilliantly written, brilliantly performed and also brilliantly directed.
In 1930's Austria, a young woman named Maria is failing miserably in her attempts to become a nun. When the Navy captain Georg Von Trapp writes to the convent asking for a governess that can handle his seven mischievous children, Maria is given the job. The Captain's wife is dead, and he is often away, and runs the household as strictly as he does the ships he sails on. The children are unhappy and resentful of the governesses that their father keeps hiring, and have managed to run each of them off one by one. When Maria arrives, she is initially met with the same hostility, but her kindness, understanding, and sense of fun soon draws them to her and brings some much-needed joy into all their lives -- including the Captain's. Eventually he and Maria find themselves falling in love, even though Georg is already engaged to a Baroness and Maria is still a postulant. The romance makes them both start questioning the decisions they have made. Their personal conflicts soon become overshadowed, however, by world events. Austria is about to come under the control of Germany, and the Captain may soon find himself drafted into the German navy and forced to fight against his own country.
After Julie Andrews' outstanding performance as Mary Poppins in Mary Poppins, 1 year later she stars in the leading role in a musical once again but this time playing a slightly different kind of character. We see Maria as that very gentle and friendly young woman just like Mary Poppins but I think her performance as Maria in The Sound Of Music is simply the best performance that I think she has ever done and I think should have earned her a second Academy Award win (it would have been a back-to-back win if she really won Best Leading Actress. She was nominated, though, so that was good enough). The Sound Of Music proves that Julie really was back then and still is one of the greatest British actresses of all time. I felt like this all the way through but Maria really is one of those women who you just want to give a big hug to and would make the perfect wife so that is another reason why Julie's performance was so special. Christopher Plummer has been widely known for many films in the past but I think this has been his most famous role and I think this is the best role I have seen from him. He was simply robbed of that Academy Award nomination for Best Leading Actor because he damn sure deserved it. I loved how cold he was towards Maria and towards the children but when he softened up again like before, it really showed his character deep-down and moved the audience and shows that children really do need their parent(s) to act like that towards them. Out of the supporting actors and actresses in the film, I would say it is a tie between Peggy Wood as Mother Abbess and Eleanor Parker as Baroness Elsa Schraeder. Well, in shorter words, all of the actors involved were fantastic!
Robert Wise is quite possibly the one director who started off and became an influence to great directors such as Stanley Kubrick, Danny Boyle and Oliver Stone seeing as they are all directors who have made different films of different genres. Wise, who makes his second consecutive musical after Romeo and Juliet like musical West Side Story which won Best Picture and Best Director (but Wise shared that with Jerome Robbins) and makes a musical that melted the hearts of the people in the 1960s and still does now after over 45 years. It perhaps isn't a cinema landmark or like a breakthrough in cinema but in terms of directing and how beautiful it was filmed, it certainly does blow the minds of its viewers.
Overall, The Sound Of Music is quite possibly the best directed musical of all time if not the very best. If you are not moved by this or don't find this a beautifully crafted film, you simply are one empty, heartless creature! This is easily one of the best musicals of all time as well as one of my favourite musicals, one of the best of the 60s and it is on my favourite films ever list too. I can't see there ever being a more beautiful, enchanting and magical musical than The Sound Of Music.