The Fountainhead (1949)
The Fountainhead is a 1949 American film directed by King Vidor, based on the best-selling book of the same name by Ayn Rand, who wrote the screenplay adaptation. The film and novel focus on Howard Roark, an individualistic young architect who chooses to struggle in obscurity rather than compromise his artistic and personal vision, following his battle to practice what the public sees as modern architecture, which he believes to be superior, despite an establishment centered on tradition-worship. The complex relationships between Roark and the various kinds of individuals who assist or hinder his progress, or both, allow the film to be at once a romantic drama and a philosophical work. Roark is Rand's embodiment of the human spirit, and his struggle represents the struggle between individualism and collectivism. The film stars Gary Cooper as Roark, Patricia Neal as Dominique Francon, Raymond Massey as Gail Wynand, Robert Douglas as Ellsworth Toohey and Kent Smith as Peter Keating. Although Rand's screenplay was used with minimal alterations, Rand criticized the film for elements such as editing, production design and acting.