Gone With The Wind is back at HBO Max – with TCM Discussion and Disclaimer Video Extras

That was quick. Fast recovery, HBO.

HBO Max has already returned Gone With The Wind to its movie library (see: HBO Max temporarily pulling Gone With The Wind good or bad?). It is back with a disclaimer video, discussion and more extras.

Ah, this is 2020, where everything controversial needs an explanation, disclaimer, commentary, a blogger with wind in his/her sails (like me!) pontificating upon what is, was and what could/should/would be.

Gotta love it, folks.

Here’s the TCM discussion video that now accompanies the film:

Introduced by film scholar Jacqueline Stewart at a run time of a little over four minutes, I think it’s well done and have only one question:

Why didn’t HBO Max include this to begin with?

I mean, it’s common knowledge this film has been controversial and bonus content is beloved and desirable by film fans. If you’re trying to draw people to your service, give them the extras, the fanfare, because they could already get the movie itself in a variety of other places. Why on earth would you start out a new streaming service with the adjusted for inflation bestselling film of all time film without extras?

Then again, that’s been a big part of the knock against HBO Max. It all seems a bit thrown together without as much thought as it could have had. A haphazard effort supported by some truly amazing content (see: HBO Max Launches – Here’s What Everything Looks Like Inside #HBOmax). A construction site more than a finished product. One only has to review the numerous launch missteps (no Roku and Amazon Fire support), the brand confusion (too many HBOs: HBO Go, HBO Now, etc) and this Gone With The Wind release blunder to see that the HBO Max launch was not as professional and polished as it should have been.

Despite what it got wrong, based purely on the excellent library of great TV and movie shows, HBO Max is still a good streaming service and deserves to be in the conversation with its competitors.

Hopefully, HBO Max will learn and grow from this misstep. The positive thing is the film is back, because it deserves to be watched and reviewed.

(tip for future: extras, extras, bonus content)

I need to rewatch the film and review it because it’s been many, many years since I first saw the film. I’ve only seen it one time. I was pretty young and remember it being one of my mother’s favorite films. She loved a lot of classic films. My memory of the film isn’t very clear all these years later. My guess is a lot of the time era stuff doesn’t hold up well in 2020, and not talking about only the existence and portrayal of slaves which I agree was a reprehensible time in history. I’ve added the movie to my rewatch list.

How many times have you seen Gone With The Wind? More than once? How long ago did you watch it? For me, it’s been more than 35 years ago and only one time. I’m hardly able to review it objectively under these circumstances. Am curious how I’ll feel about the film upon a rewatch.

4 thoughts on “Gone With The Wind is back at HBO Max – with TCM Discussion and Disclaimer Video Extras

  1. I’ve watched GWTW a grand total of…three times.

    Understand. I’m not a big fan of the Confederacy, the Lost Cause mythology that Southerners invented shortly after the Civil War ended (and Northerners went along with, albeit reluctantly in some cases, to have a modicum of coexistence in a reunited nation), or white supremacy. Even as young child – born and raised in a former Confederate state, even – I knew slavery was wrong, that the South was fighting to maintain it, and that Gone with the Wind (the novel) was essentially another link in the Lost Cause chain of myths.

    My mom, on the other hand, was an immigrant from South America. For her, GWTW was just a gorgeous movie, a Technicolor extravaganza with spectacular sets, memorable scenes, a stormy but unforgettable romance, and of course, Max Steiner’s gorgeous score. For someone who did not live in the US when she saw the movie at age 12, it was “just a movie.”

    I did not watch GWTW till it aired on Turner Classic Movies sometime in the 1990s. I sat through the whole thing without moving. Not because I liked it, cos I didn’t (and still don’t), but because I believed that I needed to watch it and see if my dislike of Lost Cause mythology was irrational. I also wanted to see WHY my mom liked the film so much.

    My impression of the film was, and still is, that as a technical achievement, it’s impressive. Plus, Max Steiner. I’m a sucker for film scores.

    I hated the plot and the characterizations. Even extracting the Civil War/early Reconstruction baggage from GWTW, I am annoyed by Scarlett’s infatuation with Ashley Wilkes. I can’t stand Scarlett O’Hara, although I do think Vivien Leigh was gorgeous.

    But the biggest takeaway is that the movie (and I assume the novel, too) is a gorgeously produced pro-South propaganda piece. Stands to reason cos Margaret Mitchell was from Atlanta and grew up hearing tales of the Civil War from the Confederates’ perspective from her older relatives. Naturally, she wasn’t going to be “fair and balanced” toward the Yankees.

    The second time I watched GWTW was when I bought Mom – who was sick and didn’t have much time to live – the 75th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray.

    The third and last time I watched GWTW was a few weeks ago on the same Blu-ray I’d given my mom in 2014. Still don’t like it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The Blu-ray is nice. I think I bought an inexpensive one-disc set; it doesn’t have much in the way of extra features. The one it DOES have (audio commentary by the late Rudy Behlmer) is a nice one, but it would require me to rewatch the film.

    I will probably do that at some point in the future…just for the commentary track listen.


    1. I started rewatching it yesterday on HBO Max. Man, it’s like The Irishman long lol, didn’t realize it was over three hours. No wonder they had an intermission when it was shown. My memory wasn’t that it was long as it was. Man, loving the music in just about every scene, it seems.


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