(director/writer: Stanley Kramer; screenwriter: Marc
Norman; cinematographer: Robert Surtees; editor:
Folmar Blangsted; music: Henry Mancini; cast: George
(Mase), Faye Dunaway (Lena Doyle), John Mills (Cleon Doyle), Jack Palance (Hellman), William Lucking (Marion), Harvey Jason (Wilcox), Ted Gehring (Wobbly), Cliff Osmond (Massive Man); Runtime: 108; MPAA Rating: PG-13; producer: Stanley Kramer; Sony Pictures Entertainment; 1973)
|"Though having good
production values, almost everything else
by Dennis Schwartz
Stanley Kramer ("Ship of Fools"/"The
Defiant Ones"/"Judgment of Nuremberg") dud. Though
having good production values, almost everything else
stinks. The screenplay by Marc Norman is dry, the
casting is a curious one, and most of the talented
actors overact. Also the slight plot runs out of gas
before the third act concludes. The social conscious
filmmaker still delivers his ugly message of
businessmen who piss on each other as the normal way
of doing business. It might please his fans that
Kramer, as expected, sides with the
individual over the corporation, but the film is a
clunker and watchable only for the scenic views.
1913, in Oklahoma, loner female Lena Doyle (Faye
Dunaway), into the feminist trip before
its time, reluctantly allows her estranged neglectful
dad, Cleon (John Mills), who abandoned her when her
mom died, and the drifter Mase (George C.
Scott), who the guilt-ridden dad hired in
a hobo campo to protect her wildcatting oil
rig from being shut down by the Pan Okie oil trust,
after refusing to sell to the big corporate outfit.
The oil company is represented by the mean-spirited
Hellman (Jack Palance). Meanwhile Mase runs the
derrick, and eventually melts the cynical man-hating
Lena's heart and they become lovers. When Hellman's
goons beat the piss out of Mase and drive them off the
land, they get up enough gumption to return and before
the goons return to carry out further beatings, a
gusher comes in.
plodding and predictable adventure film, that failed
to hold my interest.
REVIEWED ON 8/24/2014 GRADE: C
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
© ALL RIGHTS RESERVED DENNIS SCHWARTZ