Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (film)
|Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Clint Eastwood|
|Produced by||Clint Eastwood|
|Screenplay by||John Lee Hancock|
|Based on||Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil
by John Berendt
|Music by||Lennie Niehaus|
|Cinematography||Jack N. Green|
|Edited by||Joel Cox|
|Distributed by||Warner Bros. Pictures|
|Box office||$25.1 million|
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil is a 1997 American crime drama film directed by Clint Eastwood, and an adaptation of the book of the same name by John Berendt, which was based on real-life events that took place in Savannah, Georgia in the 1980s. The film features Kevin Spacey as Jim Williams, a man on trial for murder, and John Cusack as John Kelso, a writer covering the case.
Several changes were made in adapting the film from the novel. Many of the more colorful characters were eliminated or made into composite characters. The writer, played by Cusack, was based upon Berendt, but was given a love interest not featured in the book, played by Eastwood's daughter Alison Eastwood. The multiple Williams trials were combined into one on-screen trial. Jim Williams' real life attorney Sonny Seiler appears in the movie in the role of Judge White, the presiding judge of the trial.
This panoramic tale of Savannah's eccentricities focuses on a murder and the subsequent trial of Jim Williams: self made man, art collector, antiques dealer, bon vivant and semi-closeted homosexual. John Kelso a magazine reporter finds himself in Savannah amid the beautiful architecture and odd doings to write a feature on one of William's famous Christmas parties. He is intrigued by Williams from the start, but his curiosity is piqued when he meets Jim's violent, young and sexy lover, Billy. Later that night, Billy is dead, and Kelso stays on to cover the murder trial. Along the way he encounters the irrepressible Lady Chablis, a drag queen commedienne, Sonny Seiler, lawyer to Williams, whose famous dog UGA is the official mascot of the Georgia Bulldogs, an odd man who keeps flies attached to mini leashes on his lapels and threatens daily to poison the water supply, the Married Ladies Card Club, and Minerva, a spiritualist. Between being Jim's buddy, cuddling up to a torch singer, meeting every eccentric in Savannah, participating in midnight graveyard rituals and helping solve the mysteries surrounding Billy's murder, Kelso has his hands full.
- Kevin Spacey as Jim Williams
- John Cusack as John Kelso
- Jack Thompson as Sonny Seiler
- Irma P. Hall as Minerva
- Jude Law as Billy Hanson
- Alison Eastwood as Mandy Nicholls
- Paul Hipp as Joe Odom
- The Lady Chablis as Chablis Deveau
- Kim Hunter as Betty Harty
- Geoffrey Lewis as Luther Driggers
- Bob Gunton as Finley Largent
- Richard Herd as Henry Skerridge
- Leon Rippy as Detective Boone
- Sonny Seiler as Judge White
- Dorothy Loudon as Serena Dawes
Principal photography began in spring 1997, and was shot in Savannah, Georgia. The film featured a cameo by Uga V, the English bulldog live mascot of the University of Georgia, playing his father, Uga IV. The Uga mascots live in Savannah between football games.
Reviews of the film were mixed, with a score of 47% on Rotten Tomatoes. Casting in the film was praised, however, for Spacey's likeness to Williams.
Spacey won the best supporting actor award from the Society of Texas Film Critics.
|Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil|
|Soundtrack album by Various Artists|
|Released||November 18, 1997|
Integral to the film was the soundtrack which was released in 1997. It is dedicated to the music of Johnny Mercer, a Savannah native. The CD includes versions of songs heard in the film.
|1.||"Skylark"||Hoagy Carmichael, Johnny Mercer||k.d. lang||3:46|
|2.||"Too Marvelous for Words"||Richard Whiting, Mercer||Joe Williams||3:40|
|3.||"Autumn Leaves"||Joseph Kosma, Jacques Prévert, Mercer||Paula Cole||7:24|
|4.||"Fools Rush In (Where Angels Fear to Tread)"||Rube Bloom, Mercer||Rosemary Clooney||4:10|
|6.||"Days of Wine and Roses"||Henry Mancini, Mercer||Cassandra Wilson||4:47|
|7.||"That Old Black Magic"||Harold Arlen, Mercer||Kevin Spacey||3:33|
|8.||"Come Rain or Come Shine"||Arlen, Mercer||Alison Eastwood||4:32|
|9.||"Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive"||Arlen, Mercer||Clint Eastwood||3:35|
|10.||"This Time the Dream's on Me"||Arlen, Mercer||Alison Krauss||3:46|
|11.||"Laura"||David Raksin, Mercer||Kevin Mahogany||4:49|
|12.||"Midnight Sun"||Lionel Hampton, Sonny Burke, Mercer||Diana Krall||4:01|
|13.||"I'm an Old Cowhand (From the Rio Grande)"||Mercer||Joshua Redman||4:59|
|14.||"I Wanna Be Around"||Sadie Vimmerstedt, Mercer||Tony Bennett||2:10|
- Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil at the Internet Movie Database
- Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil at Box Office Mojo
- Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil at Rotten Tomatoes
- Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil at Metacritic