The Best Years of Our Lives (1946)
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Yes. Producer Samuel Goldwyn reportedly was inspired to produce The Best Years of Our Lives after his wife Frances read an article in the 7 August, 1944 issue of Time magazine about the difficulties faced by WWII servicemen returning to civilian life. Goldwyn hired American novelist and former war correspondent MacKinlay Kantor [1904-1977] to write the story. It was first published as a book-length narrative poem titled Glory for Me (1945). Based on Kantor's novel, American playwright Robert Sherwood [1896-1955] wrote the screenplay. The movie won the 1947 Academy Award for Best Motion Picture. Edit (Coming Soon)
Yes. Toward the end of the movie, when Marie [Virginia Mayo] is sitting at a dressing table and going on about Fred [Dana Andrews]'s failures, she blurts out: "I gave up the best years of my life," which is the point of the title. Americans, who didn't start the war and weren't responsible for it, sacrificed themselves to help save the world. These were very young people, many of whom were killed, many of whom were traumatized, who gave up the best years of their lives. And, for some, ironically, their years in the service would be remembered as the best years of their lives. Edit (Coming Soon)
A bit. Dana Andrews was clearly playing someone about 23. He was 36 when he made this film. (Fredric March), who was almost 50 when he made this film, played Al Stephenson, who was in his early 40's. Even more interesting is how close in age were Milly Stephenson (Myrna Loy) and her daughter Peggy (Teresa Wright). Loy was only 13 years older than Wright.
What kind of question is this? A question asked by the answerer? C'mon. Dana Andrews was not too old for this at all. He didn't look too old if he were too old, and he was perfect. Edit (Coming Soon)