The dramatic story of a lady’s influence on the life of a great man invariably makes for interesting filming, and in the case of Andrew Jackson, the seventh president of the United States, 20th-Fox has created a particularly moving narrative. Based on Irving Stone’s bestselling novel, Lady covers more than 40 years in the life of the famed Indian fighter and general.
It covers the period when the young Tennessee lawyer is Attorney General, through his battles with the Indians – and, more importantly, through the period of courting and marriage with Rachel Donelson Robards. It is the story of Jackson being forced to fight his way up the political ladder with the stigma of adultery plaguing him along the way.
Through it all, Charlton Heston supplies the kind of ammunition to this film that is as loaded as any carbine slung across his broad shoulders. It is a forthright steely-eyed portrayal. Susan Hayward gives the pic a simple, sustained performance in addition to physical beauty. John McIntire plays Jackson’s longtime friend and law partner, and he gives the role neat shading in a distinctly lesser role.
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1953: Nominations: Best B&W Costume Design, B&W Art Direction