DEADLINE U.S.A.
1952, 20th Century Fox, 87 min, USA, Dir: Richard Brooks

Humphrey Bogart is at the top of his form as Ed Hutcheson, a crusading newspaper editor out to expose a gangster while juggling commercial needs with the public interest. A razor-sharp script by veteran Richard Brooks and solid supporting work from Kim Hunter and Ed Begley make this a must-see.


IN COLD BLOOD
1967, Sony Repertory, 134 min, USA, Dir: Richard Brooks

This starkly masterful adaptation of Truman Capote’s true-crime classic emerges as one of the finest films by director Richard Brooks (THE BLACKBOARD JUNGLE, THE PROFESSIONALS). Robert Blake and Scott Wilson etch startlingly vivid portrayals of killers Perry Smith and Dick Hickock, two small-time thieves whose bungled home invasion robbery evolved into a slaughter of the helpless Clutter family. Charles McGraw and Jeff Corey are likewise superb as Smith’s and Hickock’s fathers. With John Forsythe as doggedly methodical head investigator Alvin Dewey. Nominated for four Oscars, including Best Director and Screenplay (Brooks), Best Cinematography (Conrad Hall) and Best Music (Quincy Jones).


CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF
1958, Warner Bros., 108 min, USA, Dir: Richard Brooks

Tennessee Williams’ controversial play had to be somewhat sanitized for Hollywood, but what director Richard Brooks loses in frank sexual dialogue, he gains in Elizabeth Taylor’s sultry performance as a frustrated wife. Paul Newman plays her impotent husband, and their troubled marriage serves as the focal point for a gallery of gleefully appalling supporting characters, including Burl Ives as the family’s power-and-money-wielding patriarch, Big Daddy.


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