Written by / 6/13/2016 / No comments / , , , , , , ,

COOPER & WIDMARK RIDE IN GARDEN OF EVIL

Gorgeous wideshot of Hayward and Cooper YEAR: 1954
A year before GARDEN OF EVIL, an adventurous Cowboy Film Noir taking place in Mexico starring, primarily, Gary Cooper and Susan Hayward, the wonderfully sinister Ralph Meeker kidnaps, or rather, hijacks or you can even say, bums a pistol-pointed ride off Barbara Stanwyck, whose husband is buried beneath a piece of a dilapidated pier and as the tide rises, time runs out...

That was the underrated JEOPARDY, and in GARDEN OF EVIL, the urgent drive is not that much different. Only Susan Hayward isn't being taken. Instead, her red-haired beauty with a load of cash persuades a group of basically strangers, who "washed-up" (boat broke down) in a Mexican town so rural not even good time gambler Richard Widmark can have any fun. Enter the "friendly antagonist," our third banana who's the most like Meeker. That being the usually-villainous, explosive human bobcat, Cameron Mitchell, going bonkers when his lusting testosterone gets the best of him: His postman only rings once...

The Foreign Cover Wins
Gary Cooper, not a highly energetic actor but a giant on the big screen, and always a wise, tough presence, tells his second sidekick that that man they were paid to save... Hayward's husband, who she's determined to, with a lot of help, rescue – is the one and only thing on her mind. Along the way, we hear a lot about how Aztecs had run gold-lusting white men out of the god-forsaken land. So as half the film shows the group journeying through what looks a cross between a colorized Kong Island and the mountainous slopes of SIERRA MADRE, the suspense relies on a strange palpable feeling snappy Widmark has all along: in his opinion, they've been duped by the sexy siren, and it's downhill from there... Also thanks or no thanks to those damn Apaches!

MOVIE RATING: ***
Once the group reach the mine near a cabin where Hayward's injured husband whines and whines; where The Mexican and Mitchell sing selfish praise to the gold in the cemetery-locale; as Widmark remains a benign witness and the one true hero, Cooper, sees smoke signals in the sky – the Bernard Hermann score blares louder than ever. But it would have been far more effective slow and meticulous than bombastic and final because, while random heads of nefarious Apaches pop up in the distance, the building momentum of what seems more of a valley of doom than a GARDEN OF EVIL is much better mysterious, sustaining the eerie vibe and straying from a Standard Western template. Meanwhile, the root of this GARDEN, Lana Turner, provides a soft manipulating aura, injecting a pulpy Film Noir vibe, although, as a whole, the title is a lot more intense than the movie itself.
Share This Post :
Tags : , , , , , , ,

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Featured Post

SWORD & DINOSAUR SEQUEL 'THE PEOPLE THAT TIME FORGOT'

Awesome Looking Matte Painting from THE PEOPLE THAT TIME FORGOT Year: 1977 Not a respected cult film like THE LAND THAT TIME FORGOT, wha...

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Most Popular Last Year

WWW.CULTFILMFREAKS.COM

WWW.CULTFILMFREAKS.COM
Movie Reviews, Interviews, Articles and Pop Culture from White Heat to Blue City

FOR TELEVISION REVIEWS

LIKE US ON FACEBOOK

TOTAL HITS

Popular Trending

FOUNDED BY JAMES M. TATE

FOUNDED BY JAMES M. TATE
RANDOM QUOTE: "I'm surrounded by cattle... He wouldn't know an interesting face from a sow's belly." Jose Ferrer, Lawrence of Arabia

FAVORITES SHORTLIST

1)THE FEARMAKERS 2)JAWS 3)THE CROWDED SKY 4)RAIDERS FROM BENEATH THE SEA 5)ANATOMY OF A MURDER 6)ASH WEDNESDAY 7)SHARKS' TREASURE 8)CANYON PASSAGE 9)THE MAN FROM LARAMIE 10)HOT CARS 11)CURSE OF THE DEMON 12)HARDCORE 13)VIOLENT SATURDAY 14)FALLEN ANGEL 15)DUEL IN THE JUNGLE 16)SWEENEY TWO 17)THE DEFECTOR 18)THE ROARING TWENTIES 19)AIR PATROL 20)THE ONLY GAME IN TOWN 21)THE SERGEANT 22)OTLEY 23)AL CAPONE 24)WILLIAM CONRAD'S BRAINSTORM 25)KILLER FISH 26)SEALED CARGO 27)COMPULSION 28)MY BLOOD RUNS COLD 29)EASY LIVING 30)WHERE THE SIDEWALK ENDS 31)ATLANTIC CITY 32)JUDGEMENT AT NUREMBERG 33)CANYON RIVER 34)MADISON AVENUE 35)THE SHARKFIGHTERS 36)DEMETRIUS AND THE GLADIATORS 37)QUANTRILL'S RAIDERS 38)SWAMP WATER 39)THUNDER ISLAND 40)THE DAY THEY ROBBED THE BANK OF ENGLAND

ACTORS 1)DANA ANDREWS 2)JAMES CAGNEY 3)MARLON BRANDO 4)JACK NICHOLSON 5)ORSON WELLES 6)PETER O'TOOLE 7)TOM COURTENAY 8)CHARLES BRONSON 9)GENE HACKMAN 10)VICTOR MATURE ACTRESSES 1)VIRGINIA MAYO 2)SUE LYON 3)GENE TIERNEY 4)MERRY ANDERS 5)FAYE DUNAWAY DIRECTORS 1)JACQUES TOURNEUR 2)RICHARD FLEISCHER 3)STANLEY KUBRICK 4)ORSON WELLES 5)OTTO PREMINGER 6)JOHN CARPENTER 7)MAURY DEXTER 8)JOHN LANDIS 9)MICHAEL WINNER 10)SAM PECKINPAH

RARITIES & EXPLOITATION

Popular This Month

CINEMA OF DANA ANDREWS

TRIPPING INTO THE SIXTIES

WESTERN GENRE REVIEWS

All Time Popular

TARGETING THE SEVENTIES

KICKING IN THE EIGHTIES

TALES AND REFLECTIONS

RETURN TO THE HOMEPAGE