The Lusty Men (1952) Nevada (1944)

The Lusty Men (1952)
July 9, 2011 - 7:30 pm

The Lusty Men (1952)

"A masterpiece by Nicholas Ray—perhaps the most melancholy and reflective of his films." -Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader

Directed by Nicholas Ray

Pairing actor Robert Mitchum, who claimed his acting method consisted entirely of asking “What page is it and where are the marks?” with Nicholas Ray, a director who burrowed deep with his actors into the psychological motivations of character, would seem to be a recipe for disaster, both on set and on screen. The Lusty Men, however, stands as masterpiece of post-war Hollywood featuring one of Mitchum’s finest performances as a one-time rodeo champion who returns home to grapple with the bitter end of his career and an era.

RKO. Producer: Jerry Wald. Screenwriter: Horace McCoy. Cinematographer: Lee Garmes. Editor: Ralph Dawson. Cast: Susan Hayward, Robert Mitchum, Arthur Kennedy, Arthur Hunnicutt, Frank Faylent.

35mm, b/w, 113 min.

Nevada (1944)

Directed by Edward Killy

In his first starring role at RKO, Mitchum slips into the character of laid-back cowpoke Jim Lacy like sliding into a pair of well-worn blue jeans. After winning a big stake at a dice game—and a subsequent run in with gamblers—Lacy and his pals head for Comstock with a case of gold fever but it’s really silver in them thar hills and a corrupt assayer wants to get his hands on every last ounce. The plot here, complete with bum murder rap and show girl with a conscience, make this second remake of Zane Grey’s novel creak like a saloon sign in a ghost town but Mitchum swaggers through it all with the magnetic aplomb.

Based on the novel by Zane Grey; Screenwriter: Norman Houston; Cinematographer: Harry J. Wild; Editor: Roland Gross; Cast: Robert Mitchum, Anne Jeffreys; Guinn Big; Nancy Gates; Richard Martin. 

16mm, b/w, 62 min.