Peyton Place (1957)

Genres - Drama, Romance  |   Sub-Genres - Coming-of-Age, Ensemble Film, Teen Movie  |   Run Time - 162 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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The controversial, massively popular Peyton Place is a melodramatic soap opera of Herculean proportions. The filmmakers attempt to cram every gossipy degradation possible into the 157-minute running length, and, though the end results are actually less explicit than Grace Metalious' source novel, the film still caused quite a stir at the time. Peyton Place exposed the post-war cynicism that lurked beneath the genteel facade of the 1950s; it tempted moviegoers with the expectation of propriety, and they showed up in droves. Though the film's histrionics and suggestiveness have become somewhat passé over the years, the movie still has its own kitschy charm. Peyton Place and its TV spin-off spawned at least a decade's worth of similar soap-opera-type films.