The Greatest Show on Earth (1952)

greatest_show_on_earth_ver3“A lion I fight for you, a tiger! But the red-headed wildcat with an elephant, no.” – Sebastian

Number of Times Seen –2  (sometime in 1995 and 23 Feb 2014)

Brief Synopsis – The daily workings of a traveling 3 ring circus from the animal trainings to the trapeze artists to the clown who make everyone laugh.

My Take on it – This movie is truly nothing to write home about.  There are a few interesting circus feats that are enjoyable to watch, but there isn’t much of a plot or interesting characters since everyone is a caricature of known circus acts.

There’s even a clown who refuses to ever take off his face paint played by Jimmy Stewart.

The director, Cecile B.DeMille was such a perfectionist that he forced every actor to do there own circus stunts.

This movie is known for being the most politically charged choice for a Best Picture Oscar.  DeMille was loved by everyone for  so many years and it’s rival High Noon (1952) had too many Communist undertones to it including a  writer who was blacklisted by Congress, so this movie won Best Picture because of the fear of Academy members of the HUAC committee.

Winner of 2 (of 5) Oscars.  It won Best Picture and Best Story.

It lost Best Director (DeMille), Costumes and Film Editing

This movie is just a spectacle for the circus acts and nothing more.

What a travesty!!! 😦

Bottom Line – Very mediocre Best Picture winner that won because of politics and not because it was the best movie of the year.  Truly a disgrace that this beat High Noon (1952)

Rating – BAFTA Worthy


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6 thoughts on “The Greatest Show on Earth (1952)

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