Sunday, March 8, 2015

Elmer Gantry - saint or sinner?

Rated 96% on Rotten Tomatoes, the film Elmer Gantry is based on Sinclair Lewis’s novel of the same name. Gantry (Burt Lancaster) is a con-artist street preacher who is coarse, ambitious, loud, and often drunk. He joins Sister Sharon Falconer’s (Jean Simmons) traveling tent ministry, and builds up a following with his fire-and-brimstone sermons. When Lulu Bains (Shirley Jones) re-enters his life, his past catches up with him.

Also appearing in the movie are Arthur Kennedy as an H.L. Mencken-style atheistic journalist, Patti Page as Sister Rachel, and Edward Andrews as George Babbitt, a character borrowed from another Sinclair Lewis novel.

The film won three Academy Awards: Best Actor (Burt Lancaster), Best Supporting Actress (Shirley Jones), and Best Adapted Screenplay (Richard Brooks).

We'll show Elmer Gantry in the McEntee Meeting Room on Tuesday, March 10, at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free, and so is the popcorn!  For more information, call the library at 265-2153 or check its website at

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