Run for Cover

Run for Cover

Director: Nicholas Ray

Cast: James Cagney, John Derek, Viveca Lindfors

     
 

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In his first western since 1939's The Oklahoma Kid, James Cagney is a pillar of integrity in the Pine-Thomas production Run for Cover. Cagney plays Matt Dow, who at the beginning of the film has been released from prison after serving six years for a crime he didn't commit. Heading westward, Matt befriends young Davey Bishop (John Derek), whom he begins

Overview

In his first western since 1939's The Oklahoma Kid, James Cagney is a pillar of integrity in the Pine-Thomas production Run for Cover. Cagney plays Matt Dow, who at the beginning of the film has been released from prison after serving six years for a crime he didn't commit. Heading westward, Matt befriends young Davey Bishop (John Derek), whom he begins to regard as the son (or brother) he never had. When Davey is injured during a train holdup, Matt brings him to the farm of Mr. Swenson (Jean Hersholt) to convalesce. Here Matt falls in love with Swenson's daughter Helga (Viveca Lindfors). When word of Matt's prowess with a gun reaches the local townsfolk, he is offered the job of sheriff. Matt accepts, but on one condition: that the crippled Davey be appointed deputy. Matt's faith in Davey proves to be misplaced when the embittered boy throws in with the dreaded Gentry gang, but an 11th hour regeneration caps this "psychological western." The curiously Freudian relationship between Matt and Davey was par for the course for Nicholas Ray, who directed Run for Cover betwixt and between his more famous endeavors Johnny Guitar and Rebel without a Cause.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Run for Cover starts out well and promises to be an unusual Western that explores character of greater depth than are found in the run-of-the-mill examples of the genre. Unfortunately, its early promise isn't sustained, and in the end, Cover ends up being a disappointment. Directed by Nicholas Ray, Cover shares with many other of Ray's films an exploration of "the generation gap" and the ways in which older men and younger men connect and disconnect. Unlike most of the director's other films, however, Cover is more concerned with, and more sympathetic to, the older man. This should have been the set up for a melancholy, perhaps even tragic, story, but it instead devolves into a more routine "good vs. evil" picture with a totally unconvincing 11th hour transformation. Ray's direction is solid and in some instances outstanding, but there's also a feeling that he wasn't totally caught up in the material; perhaps he wished it to proceed in a different direction and was frustrated in his efforts. John Derek is also no James Dean as the younger man, and his okay-but-nothing-more performance is a detriment. James Cagney, on the other hand, is in beautiful form, running with every chance the screenplay provides him.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/29/2012
UPC:
0887090038706
Original Release:
1955
Rating:
NR
Source:
Olive Films
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Colorized]
Time:
1:33:00
Sales rank:
29,428

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
James Cagney Matt Dow
John Derek Davey Bishop
Viveca Lindfors Helga Swenson
Jean Hersholt Mr. Swenson
Ernest Borgnine Morgan
Grant Withers Gentry
Jack Lambert Larsen
Irving Bacon Scotty
Trevor Bardette Paulsen
Ray Teal Sheriff
Denver Pyle Harvey
Emerson Treacy Bank Clerk
Gus Schilling Doc Ridgeway
Phil Chambers Andrews
Harold J. Kennedy Devers
Joe Haworth Miller
Frank Cordell Actor
Howard Joslin Actor
Jack Montgomery Actor
Rocky Shahan Actor
John Miljan Mayor Walsh
Henry Wills Townsman

Technical Credits
Nicholas Ray Director
Jack Brooks Songwriter
Henry Bumstead Art Director
Sam Comer Set Decoration/Design
Francisco Day Asst. Director
Farciot Edouart Set Decoration/Design,Special Effects
Daniel L. Fapp Cinematographer
Harriet Frank Original Story
John P. Fulton Special Effects
Edith Head Costumes/Costume Designer
Howard Jackson Score Composer,Songwriter,Musical Direction/Supervision
Frank R. McKelvey Set Decoration/Design
Winston Miller Screenwriter
Hal Pereira Art Director
William Pine Producer
Irving Ravetch Original Story
Howard A. Smith Editor
William C. Thomas Producer,Screenwriter
Wally Westmore Makeup

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Run for Cover
1. Opening [:12]
2. The Wrong Men [10:20]
3. Farmer's Daughter [14:12]
4. New Sheriff in Town [14:21]
5. Penalty For a Kill [10:54]
6. Easter Sunday [4:59]
7. Two-Man Posse [5:21]
8. Showdown [9:45]

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