Cabin Fever Film Festival: “THE FURIES” (1950)

In Uncategorized on April 6, 2020 at 4:14 am

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Happy birthday Walter Huston! I have written at length elsewhere about his greatest screen performance in a great film, William Wyler’s triumphant version of Sinclair Lewis’ DODSWORTH (1936), but, really, he could play just about anything, and I wish the big, beautiful virtual shrine I am erecting in his honor  had a c-note for every time someone calls Spencer Tracy the greatest American screen actor, because Huston was infinitely superior, and utterly deserving of the finest carved marble, porphyry and gold leaf detailing. He was sublime in another Sinclair Lewis adaptation, John Cromwell’s ANN VICKERS and, of course, his Oscar-winning old codger in THE TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE. My other favorite western he made is the jaw-dropping THE FURIES, directed by Anthony Mann and featuring, at its center, a deeply Freudian relationship between him and his dangerous, totally obsessive daughter Barbara Stanwyck. Psychologically dark elements were the rage in westerns of the late 1940s, as witness this, DUEL IN THE SUN, RED RIVER, BLOOD ON THE MOON, and others, culminating in the ever-influential, gnarly magnificence of John Ford’s THE SEARCHERS in 1956. The spectacular cast of THE FURIES includes Judith Anderson as the interloper in this fevered, venal welter of Daddy Issues, Gilbert Roland, a ferocious Blanche Yurka as his pistol-packin’ mama , Wallace Ford, Albert Dekker, Beulah Bondi, Thomas Gomez, Movita, John Bromfield, and the always yawn-inducing Wendell Corey. So, saddle up, come ride the range of the Furies and prepare to be astonished by life’s overheated sexy viciousness among this cowpoke landed gentry.

watch it here:

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