A timeless, faultless classic
The Sound of Music is one of the most riveting musicals ever, from the moment the characters are introduced to the end. But this movie is not for everyone, especially those who do not like long features. Despite its length, I refused to leave my seat for a refreshment until intermission came, for fear I would miss a part; then it left me wanting more as it came to an end. The plot is complicated and intense but seemed simple through ingenious use of fantastic cinematography that shows only enough majestic mountains, grove of beautiful trees and fabulous architecture and the use of comedy throughout, to prevent it from swallowing the characters.
As serious as it was during the Nazi occupied Germany, comedic actions and deeds of the Von Trapp children and nuns at the Abbey who supposedly follow the "laws of God" was amusing and lightened what would have otherwise been a very heavy stressful film. The understanding nature of Julie Andrews, as she served as the nanny to the Von Trapp children unleashed pent up resentment the Captain felt towards his children when their mother passed away and left him to care for and bring up his children. With this resentment, laughter and happy songs were forbidden in his presence or in the home. The seven Von Trapp children, in turn, made it their mission to drive away all their nannies.
The challenge for Maria as she served as nanny was minute. Maria automatically understood and fell in love with all seven children. What became a problem was when she discovered that she was falling in love with the Captain and knew that as an aspiring nun, she felt vulnerable and could not give in to her feelings. As each scene is introduced, as the viewer, you could not help but pick and choose which child to pay attention to the most, then changing your attention to the others each time a new scene is introduced.
As we watch Liesel sing and dance around the gazebo with her first love interest, it was heart breaking to watch him turn the Von Trapp family as they were running and hiding from Nazi Germany. Attracted to each other, first because of Maria's genuine love for the children and because the Captain saw Maria for what she was, Maria (Julie Andrews)and Captain Von Trapp (Christopher Plummer) could no longer hold their feelings back and finally gave in to the natural attraction.
Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer were definitely the right actors cast because they fit their roles as no one else can. Being a musical, this film has songs that have become embedded into our heads as we sing "Doe, a deer, a female dear; ----", Edelweiss, My Favorite Things, etc. So, as old as this musical is, children as young as four years old today, sing along with the songs as if they were currently made songs.
In my opinion, The Sound of Music, just like Gone With The Wind, should never be remade or recast; to do so would serve great injustice to a movie that is a one-of-a-kind and actors that can never be replaced.