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Nevada Smith

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Overview

Henry Hathaway's film is based on a character from Harold Robbins' The Carpetbaggers, who, in turn, based it on cowboy actor Ken Maynard. Set in the West of the 1890s, the film opens with the torture and murder of the parents of Max Sand (Steve McQueen) by a trio of gunslingers seemingly motivated by their hostility toward the mixed nature of the marriage, since the wife is a Native American. Swearing revenge, the young cowhand enlists the help of itinerant gunsmith Jonas Cord Brian Keith, who teaches him how to ...
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Overview

Henry Hathaway's film is based on a character from Harold Robbins' The Carpetbaggers, who, in turn, based it on cowboy actor Ken Maynard. Set in the West of the 1890s, the film opens with the torture and murder of the parents of Max Sand (Steve McQueen) by a trio of gunslingers seemingly motivated by their hostility toward the mixed nature of the marriage, since the wife is a Native American. Swearing revenge, the young cowhand enlists the help of itinerant gunsmith Jonas Cord Brian Keith, who teaches him how to shoot while counseling against revenge. Nonetheless, Sand doggedly scours one town after the other before finally running up against one of the murderers, Jesse Coe (Martin Landau). He finally kills Coe in a vicious knife fight, but is severely wounded himself and has to be nursed back to health by Neesa (Janet Margolin), a young Kiowa woman. He next heads for Louisiana where another of the murderous trio, Bill Bowdre (Arthur Kennedy), is serving a prison sentence in a remote swamp. In order to get close to the man, Sand stages a robbery, and is soon among the prison inmates. This was the only film on which McQueen worked with Landau, the only other person admitted to the Actor's Studio out of thousands of applicants in 1957.
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Special Features

Closed Caption; Widescreen version enhanced for 16:9 TVs; English subtitles; Dolby Digital: English Mono, French Mono
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Michael Costello
Hathaway's revenge Western, minimal enough in its dialogue to seem like a silent at times, is a perfect setting for McQueen's perennially aggrieved persona. Although often primitive in its technique, the austere beauty of the film's Western locations, its leisurely pace, and the methodical nature of the hero's pursuit imbue its inevitable violence with a strangely meditative cast. Unlike action films of recent decades, where revenge is usually swift and sure, Nevada Smith underlines the exhaustive nature of McQueen's search and the sheer physical toll of killing even one man. As the years pass, the film records the ugly transformation of the vulnerable kid into a stone-cold killer. Except for Arthur Kennedy, who is reliably good in the meatiest of the roles afforded the villains, McQueen so dominates the film that the excellent cast really only needs to use a fraction of their talent. Among its spectacular locations are Mount Ritter and Banner Peak in California, and Atchafalaya Basin in Louisiana.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/22/2003
  • UPC: 097360653243
  • Original Release: 1966
  • Rating:

  • Source: Paramount
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Cinemascope (2.35:1)
  • Presentation: Wide Screen
  • Sound: Dolby Digital
  • Language: English, Fran├žais
  • Time: 2:10:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Steve McQueen Nevada Smith/Max Sand
Karl Malden Tom Fitch
Brian Keith Jonas Cord
Arthur Kennedy Bill Bowdre
Suzanne Pleshette Pilar
Raf Vallone Father Zaccardi
Janet Margolin Neesa
Pat Hingle Big Foot
Howard Da Silva Warden
Martin Landau Jesse Coe
Paul Fix Sheriff Bonnell
Gene Evans Sam Sand
Josephine Hutchinson Mrs. Elvira McCanles
John Doucette Uncle Ben McCanles
Val Avery Buck Mason
Sheldon Allman Sheriff
Lyle Bettger Jack Rudabaugh
Bert Freed Quince
David McLean Romero
Steve Mitchell Buckshot
Merritt Bohn Riverboat Pilot
Sandy Kenyon Bank Clerk
John Lawrence Hogg
Stanley Adams Storekeeper
George Mitchell Paymaster
John Litel Doctor
Ted de Corsia Hudson, Bartender
Ric Roman Cipriano
Strother Martin Strother
Technical Credits
Henry Hathaway Director, Producer
Del Acevedo Makeup
Lucien Ballard Cinematographer
C. Frank Beetson Jr. Costumes/Costume Designer
Frank Beetson Jr. Costumes/Costume Designer
Robert R. Benton Set Decoration/Design
Frank Bracht Editor
Herbert Coleman Production Manager
John Michael Hayes Screenwriter
Tambi Larsen Art Director
Paul K. Lerpae Special Effects
Joseph E. Levine Executive Producer
Harold Lewis Sound/Sound Designer
Daniel McCauley Asst. Director
Alfred Newman Score Composer
Hal Pereira Art Director
Al Y. Roelofs Art Director
George C. Thompson Special Effects
Wally Westmore Makeup
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. The Murder of Max Sand's Family [10:19]
2. Setting Out for Revenge [12:42]
3. Jonas Cord [5:38]
4. Studying Up [5:29]
5. Going Where the Money Is [6:09]
6. Killing Jesse Coe [7:22]
7. Neesa [4:28]
8. Looking for Names [3:31]
9. "The Word Is Apprehended" [12:25]
10. Enemies and Friends [5:31]
11. Dying in Sin [7:03]
12. Mean as Tom Fitch [12:18]
13. Father Zaccardi [8:04]
14. "Smith... Nevada Smith" [7:39]
15. Aiming to Kill [7:59]
16. "Finish Me!" [8:11]
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Play
   Set Up
      Audio Options: English
      Audio Options: French
      Subtitle Options: English
      Subtitle Options: None
   Scene Selection
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 1 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    MORE POETICALLY BEAUTIFUL STORYTELLING THAN YOU THINK

    A vastly, incredibly underappreciated western. Actually, more of a odessy set in a western mold. Don't forget the beautifully staged fight scenes. The knife fight between Landau and Mcqueen should be right there with Stagecoach; I'm sorry. I have to say it. These rigid definitions/opinions of what a classic western are are helping to stagnate interest in the genre. There's no credit given to westerns that rank with Die Niebelungen in poetic grace and austerity. The story is brutally simple, following a youth(Mcqueen) through a fixation on revenge that lasts years, encompassing a vast, gigantic, unexplored world to the young man in the process. He's given some valuable advice, but we know he's going to learn the hard way. Mcqueen is masterfully understated here, blending humility into an inexperienced ''half-breed'' youth. Kennedy and Malden are vivid in their clever presentations. I don't know who's more evil: Landau or Malden. Its as if we're witnessing the first results of an incredible sea-change in acting style, reminiscent of HOMBRE more than THE SEARCHERS. There's much more intimacy here, therefore more ''reality''.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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