Classic Cuts Collection: Tough Guys

26/03/2007
  |  Buy to Own: 26/03/2007
  |  470 min
Rated TBC by the BBFC

Synopsis

Four classic films about tough guys and the havoc they cause. Based on the story 'The Cyclists' Raid' by Frank Rodney, the classic biker movie 'The Wild One' (1953) features Marlon Brando famously responding to the question 'What are you rebelling against?' with the retort 'What d'ya got?'. A gang of motorcyclists, led by rebellious Johnny (Brando), ride into a small California town and terrorise the inhabitants. Johnny falls for the local cop's daughter (Mary Murphy), but a rival in his gang (Lee Marvin) and the hostility of the townspeople create too many tensions for anything but a violent climax. In 'The Harder They Fall' (1956), Humphrey Bogart stars in his final screen role as a sports writer who takes a job as publicist for a boxer. The boxer is controlled by the mob, who attempt to force the writer to fix a fight. 'Cape Fear' (1961) stars Robert Mitchum as the sadistic Max Cady (Robert Mitchum), who, fresh out of prison, determines to have his revenge on Sam Bowden (Gregory Peck), the lawyer who sent him away. But Cady is clever. He sticks to menacing Bowden's wife and teenage daughter with obscene phonecalls and implied threats, and never does anything that would give the police the right to arrest him. It is therefore Bowden who, in order to protect his family, must go beyond the confines of the law and seek to engage Cady in a direct confrontation. Famed for Mitchum's sinister performance and Bernard Herrmann's atmospheric score, 'Cape Fear' is one of the great classics of the late studio era. It was remade by Martin Scorcese in 1991. Stanley Kubrick's star-studded, historical epic 'Spartacus' (1960) concerns the efforts of the slave-gladiator Spartacus (Kirk Douglas) to lead the slaves of the Roman Empire in a rebellion against their masters. The ranks quickly swell as the slave army makes its way across Italy towards the coast. But the despotic Roman senator Crassus (Laurence Olivier) determines to quell the revolt for his own selfish ends, and the stage is thus set for a tremendous battle.