Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Watch us on Youtube Join the Archive Mailing List Read our Blog

Preservation funded by The Film Foundation and the Franco American Cultural Fund, a partnership of the Directors Guild of America (DGA); Société des Auteurs, Compositeurs et Editeurs de Musique (SACEM); The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA); and the Writers Guild of America—West (WGAW)

Ruthless (1948)

Ruthless (1948)
April 18, 2009 - 7:30 pm
Arianne Ulmer Cipes, daughter of director Edgar G. Ulmer.

Directed by Edgar G. Ulmer

Director Edgar G. Ulmer's complex psycho-melodrama Ruthless is undoubtedly worthy of rediscovery. A flashback-structured tale of a sociopath's remorseless drive for station and wealth, Ruthless (often referred to as Ulmer's Citizen Kane) employs a relentless undercurrent of emotional violence. As relayed in an interview with Peter Bogdanovich, Ulmer envisioned his feature as "a Jesuitic morality play… a very bad indictment against 100 percent Americanism—as Upton Sinclair saw it." The film's chilling, malevolent tone is personified in a starkly muted performance by lead—and frequent screen cad—Zachary Scott.

Eagle-Lion Films. Based on a novel by Dayton Stoddart. Producer: Arthur S. Lions. Screenwriter: Alvah Bessie, S.K. Lauren, Gordon Kahn. Cinematographer: Werner Janssen. Editor: Francis D. Lyon. Cast: Zachary Scott, Louis Hayward, Diana Lynn, Sydney Greenstreet, Lucille Bremer.

35mm, 104 min.

Preceded by:

Preservation funded by The David and Lucile Packard Foundation

News of the Day - Vol. 19, No. 257 "Red Crisis Stirs Nation!" (1948)

35mm, 8 min.

Preservation funded by The David and Lucile Packard Foundation

Popular Science, Vol. J6-5 (1948)

Subjects include the bathroom of the future, a one-man haybaler and "V-2" rocket research at White Sands Proving Ground, New Mexico.

35mm, 10 min.