1952, 20th Century Fox, 113 min, USA, Dir: Elia Kazan

Mexican revolutionary Emiliano Zapata (Marlon Brando) leads the poor of his country in an uprising against the corrupt, dictatorial president, with a little help from brother Eufemio (Anthony Quinn). Kazan’s spectacularly entertaining historical epic is part Western, part biopic and part social commentary - and a smashing success on every level. Quinn won the Oscar for his supporting role in this John Steinbeck-scripted masterpiece.

1953, 20th Century Fox, 80 min, USA, Dir: Samuel Fuller

Pickpocket Skip McCoy (Richard Widmark) lifts a stolen military microfilm from the mistress of a Communist spy. Next thing the lowlife wharf rat knows, he’s the hottest thing in the Big Apple, with the Commies and the feds all trying to kill him. A former New York crime reporter, director Sam Fuller knows how to make a backlot feel like the real thing; in his sweaty subways, skid row tenements and waterfront dives, the heroes aren’t the do-gooder feds, but nervy grifters more interested in their own survival than affairs of state. In Fuller’s world, loyalty vies with self-interest, and tenderness battles brutality to a standstill every step of the way. With Jean Peters, Richard Kiley and an Oscar-nominated Thelma Ritter.

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