‘John Huston and the Dubliners” is a valentine to the late director and a relatively standard production film about his making of ”The Dead.” Much time is devoted to the actors’ understandably admiring comments about Mr. Huston, and to the disposition of the prop department’s fake snow. The film has the potential to seem ordinary, but it becomes touched with magic whenever the director makes his presence felt. Mr. Huston displays his characteristic gallantry and his keen attention to seemingly unimportant touches (”Don’t worry about what you say, just keep talking,” he tells one actor, and gives precise instructions for reading the line ”Would you please pass the celery?”). He describes ”The Dead” as ”lacework,” and this film makes the aptness of that description very clear. Read More »
Tag Archives: John Huston
In the early 1800’s, a group of fur trappers and Indian traders are returning with their goods to civilisation and are making a desperate attempt to beat the oncoming winter. When guide Zachary Bass is injured in a bear attack, they decide he’s a goner and leave him behind to die. When he recovers instead, he swears revenge on them and tracks them and their paranoiac expedition leader down. Read More »
One war played out in front of the cameras, another raged behind them. Entangled in studio controversy during production and severely reedited for numerous reasons before release, The Red Badge of Courage intrigues with what it might have been. Yet half a century later, this National Board of Review 10 Best Films of 1951 selection still remains one of the movies’ most memorable portraits of men at war. Read More »
John Huston’s last film is a labor of love at several levels: an adaptation of perhaps one of the greatest pieces of English-language literature by one of Huston’s favorite authors, James Joyce; a love letter to the land of his ancestors and the country where his children grew up; and the chance to work with his screenwriter son Tony and his actress daughter Anjelica. The film is delicate and unhurried, detailing an early January dinner at the house of two spinster musician sisters and their niece in turn-of-the-century Ireland, attended by friends and family. Read More »
This pseudo-biographical movie depicts 5 years from 1885 on in the life of the Viennan psychologist Freud (1856-1939). At this time, most of his colleagues refuse to cure hysteric patients, because they believe they’re just simulating to gain attention. But Freud learns to use hypnosis to find out the reasons for the psychosis. His main patient is a young woman who refuses to drink water and is plagued by always the same nightmare.
— Tom Zoerner Read More »
The final film of stars Clark Gable and Marilyn Monroe is an elegy for the death of the Old West from writer Arthur Miller and director John Huston. Gable stars as Gay Langland, an aging hand traveling the byways and working at rodeos with his two comrades, Guido (Eli Wallach) and young Perce Howland (Montgomery Clift). The three men come up with a plan to corral some misfit mustangs and sell them for dog food, but Gay’s new girlfriend Roslyn Taber (Marilyn Monroe), a high-minded ex-stripper who has just divorced her husband Ray (Kevin McCarthy) in Reno, is appalled by the plan. Although both Guido and Perce are also in love with Roslyn, she stands by Gay, sure that in the end he will do the right thing, even as he and his pals begin their planned roundup.
— Karl Williams Read More »
Berkeley Art Museum / Pacific Film Archive writes:
Hailed as John Huston’s “comeback” film in 1972, Fat City is a film that deserves to come back more often. Based on a novel by Leonard Gardner, who also wrote the screenplay, and photographed by the excellent Conrad Hall (In Cold Blood), it is a portrait of the seedy, small-time boxing milieu of Stockton, CA. (“Huston is in his element here,” Andrew Sarris wrote, “simply because his realistic affectations have always been merely a cover and an alibi for his romantic affection for the compulsive losers of this world.”) The losers in Fat City are two prizefighters (Stacy Keach and Jeff Bridges), a sherry-drinking barfly (Susan Tyrrell), her jailed and released black lover (Curtis Cokes), and assorted fight managers, boxers, lettuce pickers, bartenders and countermen… Read More »