At long last, Warner Home Video will bring out a Bluray of William Wyler‘s The Best Years Of Our Lives (’46) on 11.5.13. Gregg Toland‘s cinematography isn’t show-offy, but it really brings the key scenes home. Like the Homer-and-Wilma wedding scene at the finale, which of course is really about Fred (Dana Andrews) and Peggy (Teresa Wright). Wyler and Toland hold on that final master shot (i.e., the second to last shot in the entire film) for nearly 50 seconds without a cut — an eternity by today’s standards.
Contained in this clip is a letter-reading scene between Pat Derry (Roman Bohnen) and Hortense (Gladys George). George owns this scene — it’s all about the emotions that she tries to suppress as she listens to her alcoholic husband read a letter of commendation about his son, Fred (Andrews).