“A Man for All Seasons” was on one of the all-movie networks yesterday. It reminded me what an unexpected break that movie was from the trends in 1966.
Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, one Hollywood motion picture after another argued for removing the stigma against divorce. (Previously, movie scripts were thoroughly unkind to anyone who divorced.)
So it was daring that, in the year Catholics finally were allowed to eat meat on Fridays, Columbia Pictures released a film about man who literally lost his head in the defense of an ancient principle, that divorce was intolerable.
Virtue of integrity. Of course, “A Man for All Seasons” is about much more than opposing divorce. It is about following your conscience, and you needn’t be a papist to admire such integrity.
Hollywood ought to surprise us more often with provocative messages delivered against the grain.