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

MICHAEL GOUGH CONTROLS 'KONGA' FEATURING CLAIRE GORDON

Claire Gordon and Michael Gough in KORGA Year: 1961 A movie that finally proves dumb things can sound smart when spoken in an English ac...

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: "You'd drink too if you were married to your mother." Bruce Dern, Nebraska

Blog Archive

ETERNAL ART OF FILM NOIR

FAVORITES SHORTLIST

MOVIES 1)THE FEARMAKERS 2)JAWS 3)LOCAL HERO 4)THE CROWDED SKY 5)RAIDERS FROM BENEATH THE SEA 6)VIOLENT SATURDAY 7)THE MAN FROM LARAMIE 8)CANYON PASSAGE 9)SHARKS' TREASURE 10)HOT CARS 11)CURSE OF THE DEMON 12)HARDCORE 13)ANATOMY OF A MURDER 14)EASY LIVING 15)THE ONLY GAME IN TOWN 16)SWEENEY TWO 17)WICHITA 18)WHITE HEAT 19)AIR PATROL 20)FALLEN ANGEL 21)THE SERGEANT 22)OTLEY 23)AL CAPONE 24)WILLIAM CONRAD'S BRAINSTORM 25)CANYON RIVER 26)DEMETRIUS AND THE GLADIATORS 27)FIRECREEK 28)MY BLOOD RUNS COLD 29)LAURA 30)WHERE THE SIDEWALK ENDS

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

SCIENCE-FICTION STUFF

Popular This Month


Take a ride into DANA ANDREWS Cinema

BLOGS OF INTEREST

RARITIES & EXPLOITATION

STARING INTO THE SIXTIES

STARING INTO THE SIXTIES
Wisdom. Inspiration. Wrestling Instruction.

HANGING IN THE EIGHTIES

All Time Popular

TARGETING THE SEVENTIES

TALES AND REFLECTIONS

TALES AND REFLECTIONS
"Really cool and a lot of class." Yaphet Kotto

RETURN TO THE HOMEPAGE