Tag Archives: Richard Widmark

John Ford – Two Rode Together (1961)

Recycling elements of My Darling Clementine and The Searchers in a bitter, latter-day light, this late Western by John Ford initiates the last, dark phase of the master’s vision of the corrupting influences of the progress of civilization in the wilderness. James Stewart is introduced to the Ford stock company as a thoroughly venal town marshal, Guthrie McCabe, who’s pressed into service by the cavalry to oversee the ransoming of several whites long held captive by the Indians. McCabe is concerned with nothing but making a buck on the enterprise and coming back with his scalp intact, yet against his better judgment he becomes an arbiter of social and personal justice, and a de facto one-man protest against bigotry and hypocrisy. The cinematography is bleaker than anything seen in Ford’s more heroic Westerns, and the stylistic high point is a hilarious one-take conversation between Stewart and cavalryman Richard Widmark at the river’s edge. –Richard T. Jameson Read More »

Elia Kazan – Panic in the Streets [+commentary] (1950)

Synopsis:
Filmed entirely on location in New Orleans, Panic in the Streets stars Richard Widmark as a city medical officer, racing against time to stop a plague epidemic. The carrier was an illegal alien, who has been murdered by criminals Jack Palance and Zero Mostel. At first facing opposition from rule-bound police captain Paul Douglas, Widmark is finally able to work hand-in-glove with Douglas in tracking down Palance and Mostel, who have themselves become plague carriers. Read More »

William A. Wellman – Yellow Sky (1948)

Synopsis:
A band of bank robbers on the run from a posse flee into the desert. Near death from lack of water they stumble into what appears to be a ghost town, only to discover an old prospector and his granddaughter living there. The robbers discover that the old man has been mining gold and set out to make a quick fortune by robbing the pair. Their plan runs foul when the gang leader, Stretch, falls for the granddaughter, which sets off a showdown between the entire gang. Read More »

Edward Dmytryk – Warlock (1959)

Synopsis:
In the small frontier mining town of Warlock, rancher Abe McQuown’s gang of cowboy cutthroats terrorize the peaceful community, humiliating the town’s legitimate deputy Sheriff and running him out of town. Helpless and in need of protection, the townsfolk hire the renowned town tamer Clay Blaisdell, as unofficial Marshal, to bring law and order to the town. Clay arrives with his good friend and backup Tom Morgan. The two men stand up to the ranch gang and quiet the town. Johnny Gannon, a former member of the ranch gang is bothered by the gang’s actions, reforms and takes on the deputy Sherrif job while his brother remains part of the gang. The addition of the official lawman to the mix further complicate matters, leading to an inevitable clash of the cowboys, the townsfolk, the gunslingers and the law. Read More »

Henry Hathaway – Garden of Evil (1954)

Three Americans are headed by ship around the cape to the California gold fields when they are put ashore for several weeks in a sleepy little Mexican village. While there, they are offered the job of following a lady deep into the indian infested mountains of Mexico to rescue the ladies husband trapped by a cave-in at their gold mine. For the job they are promised two thousand dollars each. While each contemplates their own chances for getting the lady and /or the gold mine, if they can survive to enjoy it. Read More »

Samuel Fuller – Hell and High Water (1954)

Synopsis:
During the Cold War, a scientific team refits a Japanese submarine and hires an ex-Navy officer to find a secret Chinese atomic island base and prevent a Communist plot against America that could trigger WW3. Read More »

Samuel Fuller – Pickup on South Street (1953)

Quote:

Pickup on South Street opens with a striking omission of dialogue and score, heightening our awareness of the film’s pared images and the diamond-hard editing rhythms. On a subway, a beautiful woman, Candy (Jean Peters), is scrutinized by two men who are obviously tailing her. Everything about Candy’s pose is intensely erotic, from the crook of her arm that’s holding the subway railing to the sweat on her skin, to the way she’s cramped up against the other passengers. Soon saddling up to her is Skip McCoy (Richard Widmark), who approaches her as the prey she clearly represents to his hunter. Hovering over Candy, Skip makes a show of folding a newspaper, opening her purse, rifling through it, and snatching the contents of interest to him. Read More »