Sunday, March 10, 2013

Bad Day At Black Rock

It is difficult to get too excited about Holywood fare - any popular movie released in the past 40 or so years is sheer garbage (there may be an exception or two, but none spring to mind).  It has reached the point where I haven't set foot in a movie theatre in more than a decade. 

I have though, in that last decade, begun viewing older movies, and especially enjoy documentaries and Film Noir-styled movies made in the 40's and 50's.

One of the finest of these is Bad Day at Black Rock, a 1955 film directed by John Sturges and featuring Spencer Tracy, Robert Ryan, Ernest Borgnine, Walter Brennan and Lee Marvin. 

Briefly, Tracy departs a train (the first passenger to arrive in town in years) in the desert town of 'Bad Rock', looking to meet with a Japanese American named Kokomo. The few residents are all hostile to Tracy's arrival. It becomes clear the townsfolk are hiding something and are nervous the outsider will expose it.

The pacing is excellent and the actors are all top-notch. If you have Netflix, may I suggest you watch it one of these nights? It's also available, in its entirety on youtube, but that's a lousy way to view a great movie.

Here's the trailer (I promise the movie's better than the trailer):

And here's an interview of Ernest Borgnine (he's, I think, 93 years of age when he gave this interview - remarkable!) where he speaks of interacting with Tracy in this, one of his first film roles:

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