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Pursued
     

Pursued

Director: Raoul Walsh, Teresa Wright, Robert Mitchum, Judith Anderson

Cast: Raoul Walsh, Teresa Wright, Robert Mitchum, Judith Anderson

 

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Chased by a posse to a remote cabin, Jeb (Robert Mitchum) is joined by his fearful wife Thorley (Teresa Wright), awaiting the arrival of the men tracking them, as they try to reason out what has gone wrong in their lives. Jeb can't remember anything about his early childhood except for a horrible incident in which the people around him were killed by a mysterious

Overview

Chased by a posse to a remote cabin, Jeb (Robert Mitchum) is joined by his fearful wife Thorley (Teresa Wright), awaiting the arrival of the men tracking them, as they try to reason out what has gone wrong in their lives. Jeb can't remember anything about his early childhood except for a horrible incident in which the people around him were killed by a mysterious stranger, whose flashing spurs were all the boy saw. He was raised by Ma Callum (Judith Anderson), alongside her two children, Thorley and Adam, as one of her own. But every time Jeb seemed poised to find peace, or even simple stability in his life, lurking nearby was Grant (Dean Jagger), a one-armed stranger who seemed bent on tormenting Jeb -- Jeb doesn't know who he really is, much less who Grant is, but Grant knows enough about him and is good enough at manipulating human nature to make Jeb a target for jealousy and murder. Making Jeb's life even more complicated is the fact that he and his adopted sister Thorley fell in love with each other, while Adam (John Rodney), his adopted brother, has come to hate him. The machinations around Jeb and Thorley come home to roost in multiple shootings and murder, a deadly chase and a long-planned lynching.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Bruce Eder
There's enough plot and complexity of character in Raoul Walsh's Pursued to fill two movies, yet between them Walsh and screenwriter Niven Busch make the film flow easily, and even compellingly. One of the strangest and most haunting films ever made by Walsh -- who was usually more highly praised for his ability to handle action than for the mood or tone of his movies -- Pursued inaugurated the "psychological" western. Out of its lead sprung such works as Anthony Mann's Winchester '73 and Henry King's The Bravados. Indeed, Pursued is so focused on the psychology of its characters, that its western setting is almost incidental. Structurally, it's far closer to film noir than to the western as the latter was understood at the time. Ironically, the movie grew out of its screenwriter's frustration over another project -- novelist and scriptwriter Niven Busch had intended to bring his own 1944 bestseller Duel In The Sun to the screen as producer, but after much behind-the-scenes haggling, that project was taken away from him and ended up the property of producer David O. Selznick, who turned Duel In The Sun into such a gargantuan production, and so dramatically over-the-top a film, that it scarcely resembled Busch's story, much less his intended movie version. In response to this set back, and to make his own "answer" to what he perceived as Selznick's making hash of his novel, Busch wrote Pursued and got it produced with his own wife, Teresa Wright, as the female lead and Robert Mitchum (in an acting tour-de-force) as the star. Pursued was everything that Duel In The Sun wasn't: Subtle in its nuances and measured and patient in its plot development, deeply atmsopheric in startlingly rich black-and-white (as opposed to the Selznick movie's garish use of Technicolor), and quietly ominous in its mood. The movie crawled with Freudian and Jungian elements in practically every corner of the screen and plot, and it seemed to offer viewers new angles of approach to understanding its complexities with each new screening. None of this could have been accomplished by Walsh and Busch without a cast and crew that did their work spot-on perfect -- every performance in Pursued is worth savoring; indeed, amid all of the top stars and future stars (including Harry Carey Jr.), one can look at it today and wonder what ever became of Ernest Severn, the young actor who played Mitchum's characted of Jeb at age 10, because even he was brilliant in his performance. Mitchum, Dean Jagger, Judith Anderson, and Teresa Wright were never much better in too much else that they ever did, and this was among the finest films that Walsh ever made, as well as offering 101 minutes of some of James Wong Howe's best photography.

Product Details

Release Date:
09/04/2012
UPC:
0887090042307
Original Release:
1947
Rating:
NR
Source:
Olive Films
Presentation:
[B&W]
Time:
1:41:00
Sales rank:
11,086

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Teresa Wright Thorley Callum
Robert Mitchum Jeb Rand
Judith Anderson Mrs. Medora "Ma" Callum
Dean Jagger Grant Callum
Harry Carey McComber's Apprentice
Alan Hale Jake Dingle
John Rodney Adam Callum
Clifton Young Sergeant
Ernest Severn Jeb (younger)
Charley Bates Adam (younger)
Peggy Miller Thorley at Age 8
Norman Jolley A Callums
Lane Chandler A Callums
Jack Montgomery A Callums
Ian MacDonald The Callums
Virginia Brissac Woman at wedding
Russ Clark Actor
Lester Dorr Actor
Tom Fadden Actor
Harry Lamont Actor
Mickey Little Actor
Ray Teal Army Captain
Eddy Waller Actor
Crane Whitley Actor
Ian Wolfe Coroner

Technical Credits
Raoul Walsh Director
Niven Busch Screenwriter
Leo F. Forbstein Musical Direction/Supervision
James Wong Howe Cinematographer
Jack McConaghy Set Decoration/Design
William McGann Special Effects
Christian Nyby Editor
Leah Rhodes Costumes/Costume Designer
Ted Smith Art Director
Milton Sperling Producer
Max Steiner Score Composer
Richard Van Enger Special Effects
Willard Van Enger Special Effects

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