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THE BAD AND THE BEAUTIFUL
1952, Warner Bros., 118 min, USA, Dir: Vincente Minnelli

Hugely entertaining - and still on-target - drama of the relentless scramble to succeed in Hollywood, starring Kirk Douglas as producer Jonathan Shields, a born hustler who creates great movies while he alienates everyone who loves him – including Lana Turner as the alcoholic daughter of a Barrymore-like matinee idol, Barry Sullivan as a trusting young director and Dick Powell as a sharp-tongued screenwriter.


LONELY ARE THE BRAVE
1962, Universal, 107 min, USA, Dir: David Miller

David Miller helmed screenwriter Dalton Trumbo’s mournful masterpiece, a hymn to rugged individualism and freedom slowly being strangled to death by voracious urban development. Kirk Douglas, a Korean War vet, is a footloose cowboy who lives most of his life under the stars, going from job to job, and not averse to cutting his way through barbed-wire fences when they get in his way. His uncompromising spirit is severely challenged when he breaks out of jail after a minor offense, and the entire county’s police force tries to recapture him before he can leave the territory. Walter Matthau is the pursuing sheriff, a thoughtful man with a growing, begrudging admiration for his fugitive, and Gena Rowlands is Douglas’ faithful friend, a woman who fears the world will sooner or later crush him.


THE VIKINGS
1958, MGM/Park Circus, 116 min, USA, Dir: Richard Fleischer

Kirk Douglas and Tony Curtis play warring adventurers locked in a battle for land and the heart (or, more accurately, body) of the gorgeous Janet Leigh in this rousing epic. With an exuberant performance by Ernest Borgnine as the head Viking and stylish direction by the ever reliable Richard Fleischer, this is a fast, funny spectacle not to be missed on the big screen.


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