I am a huge fan of Edna Ferber, and the movie Giant, adapted from her book of the same name is one of my top ten favorite films. Cimarron was one of my favorite of her books, and the 1931 adaption to film won Best Picture Oscar. Unfortunately the 1960 remake Cimarron, starring Glenn Ford did not measure up to the book, nor the 1931 film.
Directed by Anthony Mann (also directed Winchester 73 and El Cid), it has very little of what Mann was known for in previous films and in future films as well. Glenn Ford, who was one of the finest actors of his day, was lackluster in this performance, and fails to appear in the last half of the film. He was totally unbelieveable in the role and his supporting cast was just as ill-cast. The amazing Anne Baxter, was one of the best performances, however most of her scenes wound up on the cutting room floor, as she is barely seen in the film at all.
From the opening scene to about a half an hour into the film, you think …this is pretty good. However, from that point on it sinks and never pulls itself back out of the dust and tells a dullish sentimental melodrama of the taming of the frontier which is to become Oklahoma. The opening scene starts with the Oklahoma Land Rush on 22 April 1889, and is quite a cinematography masterpiece, one of the few good parts of the film. The rest is more of a soap opera and becomes tedious to say the least. The film concludes without uncovering anything important to say about settling Oklahoma and leaves gaps and holes in the stories of its soap opera characters.