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Petrified Forest
     

The Petrified Forest

3.6 3
Director: Archie Mayo

Cast: Leslie Howard, Bette Davis, Humphrey Bogart

 

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Burned-out British intellectual Alan Squier (Leslie Howard) wanders into the desert service station
estaurant owned by Jason Maple (Porter Hall). Alan finds himself an object of fascination for Jason's starry-eyed daughter, Gabrielle Bette Davis, who dreams of moving to France and establishing herself. Boze Hertzlinger (Dick Foran), Gabrielle's gas-jockey boyfriend

Overview

Burned-out British intellectual Alan Squier (Leslie Howard) wanders into the desert service station
estaurant owned by Jason Maple (Porter Hall). Alan finds himself an object of fascination for Jason's starry-eyed daughter, Gabrielle Bette Davis, who dreams of moving to France and establishing herself. Boze Hertzlinger (Dick Foran), Gabrielle's gas-jockey boyfriend, grows jealous of Alan, but the penniless, dissipated Briton has no intention of settling down; in fact, as soon as he mooches a ride from wealthy tourists Mr. and Mrs. Chisholm (Paul Harvey and Genevieve Tobin), he's on his way out of Gabrielle's life...or so everyone thinks. Later that same day, Alan, Gabrielle, Jason, Boze, and Mr. and Mrs. Chisholm are huddled together in the selfsame restaurant, held at gunpoint by Dillinger-like desperado Duke Mantee (Humphrey Bogart) and his gang. Alan seems indifferent to the danger, toasting Duke as "the last great apostle of rugged individualism." Sensing an opportunity to give his life meaning, Alan takes Duke aside, begging the outlaw to kill him so that Gabrielle can travel to Paris on the money provided by Alan's insurance policy. When the police converge on the restaurant, Duke announces that he intends to use Mr. and Mrs. Chisholm as a shield in order to make his escape. Alan tries to stop him, receiving a bullet in the belly for his troubles. "So long, pal," growls Duke fatalistically, moments before his own death, "I'll be seein' ya soon." Alan dies in Gabrielle's arms, secure in the knowledge that, alone among the film's principals, she will be able to escape the trap of her existence. When originally presented on Broadway, Robert E. Sherwood's The Petrified Forest starred Leslie Howard and Humphrey Bogart. Warner Bros. intended to cast Edward G. Robinson in Duke's role, only to be thwarted by Howard, who told the studio that he himself would drop out of the project if Bogart wasn't retained. The film proved to be just the break that Bogart needed; years later, he expressed his undying gratitude to Howard by naming his daughter Leslie Bogart. One year after The Petrified Forest, Humphrey Bogart and Leslie Howard co-starred in The Stand-In.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide
Humphrey Bogart had been in quite a few movies before getting his first juicy role in this 1936 classic. He had played the gunslinger villain in the Broadway production of the Robert E. Sherwood play, and his co-star Leslie Howard insisted that Warner Bros. cast him in the film instead of Edward G. Robinson, who was a more bankable star. The movie was a breakthrough for Bogart, though it typecast him as a heavy. Bette Davis and Howard had teamed up two years earlier in Of Human Bondage, and the chemistry between them is important to making this quirky Western plausible. Some of the dialogue is heavy-handed, and Archie Mayo's direction tends to be predictable, but The Petrified Forest is still a fine example of vintage Hollywood melodrama that was starting to allow villains like the Bogart character to be more well-rounded and interesting.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/21/2013
UPC:
0883929282661
Original Release:
1936
Rating:
NR
Source:
Turner Classic Movie
Time:
1:22:00
Sales rank:
3,778

Special Features

Commentary by Bogart biographer Eric Lax; Leonard Maltin hosts Warner Night at the Movies 1936 with newsreel, musical short Rhythmitis, cartoon The Coo Coo Nut Grove and theatrical trailers; Featurette The Petrified Forest: Menace in the Desert; Audio-only bonus: 1/7/1940 Gulf Screen Theater Broadcast

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Leslie Howard Alan Squier
Bette Davis Gabrielle Maple
Humphrey Bogart Duke Mantee
Dick Foran Boze Hertzlinger
Genevieve Tobin Mrs. Chisholm
Joe Sawyer Jackie
Porter Hall Jason Maple
Paul Harvey Mr. Chisholm
Adrian Morris Ruby
Nina Campana Paula
John Alexander Joseph the Chauffeur
Eddie Acuff Lineman
Addison Richards Radio Announcer
Slim Thompson Slim
Gus Leonard Postman
James Farley Sheriff
Jack Cheatham Deputy
Arthur Aylesworth Commander of Black Horse Troopers
Constance Bergen Mantee's Girl
George Guhl Trooper
Charles Grapewin Gramp Maple

Technical Credits
Archie Mayo Director
Henry Blanke Producer
Delmer Daves Screenwriter
Leo F. Forbstein Score Composer,Musical Direction/Supervision
John Hughes Art Director
Fred Jackman Special Effects
Bernhard Kaun Score Composer
Charles Kenyon Screenwriter
Warren Lynch Special Effects
Owen Marks Editor
Orry-Kelly Costumes/Costume Designer
Sol Polito Cinematographer
Richard Van Enger Special Effects

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The Petrified Forest 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hugo-Z-Hackenbush More than 1 year ago
Bogart steals this film, though he doesn't show until twenty minutes in. Davis is very good, but not fiesty like we usually think of her. As for Leslie Howard, he was a great actor, and in this role, I found him less sympathetic than Bogart's character. That is meant as a compliment for Mr. Howard. His character, Alan Squire is a vagabond wannabe author and adulturer,self described 'intellectual', who is really over impressed with himself, in a way that would make any Trotskyite/ Know Nothing/ or Truther proud. He makes a deal with Bogart behind Davis's back to be shot, and have his life insurance policy go to Davis allowing her to go to France. This is because he is apparently, to lazy to marry Davis and support her, and to actually put work into a relationship. There are only two reasons a man wouldn't marry Davis, and the second is that she's dead. Deader than that rat on your plate Blanche. Bogart might have been a murduring bankrobber, but he was no coward.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago