EVERYTHING ABOUT A MOVIE?
|NEVADA SMITH (director: Henry Hathaway; screenwriter: John Michael Hayes/from The Carpetbaggers by Harold Robbins; cinematographer: Lucien Ballard; editor: Frank Bracht; music: Alfred Newman; cast: Steve McQueen (Nevada Smith/Max Sand), Karl Malden (Tom Fitch), Brian Keith (Jonas Cord), Arthur Kennedy (Bill Bowdre), Suzanne Pleshette (Pilar), Pat Hingle (Big Foot Work Camp Trustee), Raf Vallone (Father Zaccardi), Martin Landau (Jesse Coe), Howard De Silva (Warden of Work Camp), Paul Fix (Sheriff Bonnell), Gene Evans (Sam Sand), Janet Margolin (Neesa); Runtime: 135; MPAA Rating: NR; producers: Henry Hathaway/Joseph E. Levine; Paramount; 1966)|
dull and labored
follow-up to Harold
Robbins' The Carpetbaggers."
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
Henry Hathaway ("Call
Northside 777"/"Rawhide"/"True Grit") directs this
overlong, dull and
Robbins' The Carpetbaggers
(1964), with Steve
playing the obsessive revenge-minded half-breed from
who was based on cowboy actor Ken
Maynard's early life, before he became a Hollywood
The plot in this revenge Western is
unbelievable, while its moralizing over forgiveness is
nor meant to be. But that didn't stop its popularity
with the public.
Max Sand (Steve
an Indian mother
and a white father, and is illiterate. His folks are
and senselessly murdered by Tom
(Karl Malden), Bill Bowdre (Arthur
Jesse Coe (Martin
Landau). At the time not knowing the
killers names, only that they are riding horses from
ranch, the teenager goes on their trail in the West
1890's. Aging itinerant
gunsmith and former gunslinger Jonas Cord (Brian Keith) feels sorry for the young
teaches him how to use a gun.
Max tracks the killers down, who went on separate paths. He meets in Abilene an Indian dance-hall whore (Janet Margolin) who belongs to his Kiowa tribe and she points out one of the killers, that he soon kills in a knife fight; Max next romances a Cajun (Suzanne Pleshette) farm worker in Louisiana and robs a bank to get arrested to meet up with one of the killers, who was arrested and held in a prison in the swamp; then Max escapes, killing the killer who flees with him; and some five years later Max tracks down the final killer on his list. But after wounding his parents' killer, he can't kill him in cold-blood and tosses away his guns after shooting out his legs. While on the run in his final destination he changed his name to Nevada Smith and decides to keep that name, hoping to make a new life for himself as he rides off in the sunset to meet up again with his philosophical mentor Cord.
REVIEWED ON 3/30/2010 GRADE: C+
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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