×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

The Unforgiven

There are many aspects of The Unforgiven that elicit comparison with Shane, particularly in regard to the composition of the scenes and the photography. Director John Huston and cameraman Franz Planer have teamed to provide an intelligent use of the medium for eye-pleasing effects, filmed in Mexico.

With:
Burt Lancaster Audrey Hepburn Audie Murphy John Saxon Charles Bickford Lillian Gish

There are many aspects of The Unforgiven that elicit comparison with Shane, particularly in regard to the composition of the scenes and the photography. Director John Huston and cameraman Franz Planer have teamed to provide an intelligent use of the medium for eye-pleasing effects, filmed in Mexico.

The screenplay from a novel by Alan Le May – although many parts are better than the whole – provides a good framework for the talents of Huston and his performers. Audrey Hepburn gives a shining performance as the foundling daughter of a frontier family. As her foster brother, obviously desperately in love with his ‘sister’, Burt Lancaster is fine as the strong-willed, heroic family spokesman and community leader.

The scene is the Texas Panhandle immediately after the Civil War at a time of unbending hatred between the white settlers and the local Kiowa Indians. The antagonism is marked by senseless massacres and excesses on the part of both sides. In the midst of this tension, it’s discovered that Hepburn is actually a full-blooded Indian. The desire of the Indians to recover their own ‘blood’, the resentment of the settlers in having an ‘enemy’ in their midst, and the determination to hold on to the girl who has been a member of the family almost since birth provides the crux of the conflict.

Lillian Gish, a silent film favorite, is okay as the mother who guards the secret of her foundling daughter. However, she has a tendency to over-react emotionally. There are good performances by Charles Bickford, as the head of another frontier family; June Walker, as his wife; Albert Salmi, as his son who courts Hepburn; Kipp Hamilton, as his daughter, and Doug McClure, as Lancaster’s youngest brother. Audie Murphy is surprisingly good as Lancaster’s hot-headed brother whose hatred of Indians causes him to abandon his family.

The Unforgiven

Production: James/United Artists. Director John Huston; Producer James Hill; Screenplay Ben Maddow; Camera Franz Planer; Editor Hugh Russell Lloyd; Music Dimitri Tiomkin

Crew: (Color) Widescreen. Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1960. Running time: 125 MIN.

With: Burt Lancaster Audrey Hepburn Audie Murphy John Saxon Charles Bickford Lillian Gish

More Film

  • Idris Elba Netflix 'Turn Up Charlie'

    Idris Elba in Talks to Join Andy Serkis in 'Mouse Guard'

    Idris Elba is in negotiations to join Andy Serkis and Thomas Brodie-Sangster in Fox’s fantasy-action movie “Mouse Guard” with “Maze Runner’s” Wes Ball directing. Fox is planning a live-action movie through performance capture technology employed in the “Planet of the Apes” films, in which Serkis starred as the ape leader Caesar. David Peterson created, wrote, [...]

  • Zac Efron Amanda Seyfried

    Zac Efron, Amanda Seyfried Join Animated Scooby-Doo Film as Fred and Daphne

    Zac Efron has signed on to voice Fred Jones while Amanda Seyfried will voice Daphne Blake in Warner Bros.’ animated Scooby-Doo feature film “Scoob.” It was revealed earlier this month that Will Forte had been set to voice Norville “Shaggy” Rogers, while Gina Rodriguez would be voicing Velma Dinkley. The mystery-solving teens and their talking [...]

  • 'Staff Only' Review: Cultures And Values

    Film Review: 'Staff Only'

    Marta (Elena Andrada) is 17, from Barcelona and alternately bored and mortified to be on a Christmas vacation to Senegal with her estranged dad, Manel (Sergi López), and annoying little brother, Bruno (Ian Samsó). For her, the freedoms of imminent adulthood, such as the occasional poolside mojito, are tantalizing close but still technically forbidden, rather [...]

  • Rocketman

    Candid 'Rocketman' Dares to Show Elton John as 'Vulnerable,' 'Damaged,' 'Ugly'

    Elton John movie “Rocketman” dares to portray the singer’s personality early in his career to have been, at times, “ugly,” Taron Egerton – who plays the pop star – told an audience at London’s Abbey Road Studios Friday, following a screening of 15 minutes of footage from the film. It is a candid portrayal, showing [...]

  • Ben Affleck

    Ben Affleck's Addiction Drama Set for Awards-Season Release

    Warner Bros. has given Ben Affleck’s untitled addiction drama an awards-season-friendly release date of Oct. 18. The film, which has been known previously as “The Has-Been” and “Torrance,” is directed by Gavin O’Connor and stars Affleck as a former basketball player struggling with addiction, which has led to him losing his wife. As part of [...]

  • Jordan Peele'Us' film premiere, Arrivals, New

    Jordan Peele Explains the Meaning Behind the 'Us' Michael Jackson Reference

    Jordan Peele’s horror movie “Us” is filled with pop culture references, from “Jaws” to “Goonies.” But the most divisive might be right in his opening sequence. Warning, minor spoilers ahead. The movie about a couple (played by Lupita Nyong’o and Winston Duke) and their children being hunted and brutalized by a mysterious family that looks just [...]

  • Swiss Film Award Winners Led By

    ‘Those Who Work,’ ‘Chris the Swiss’ Top 2019 Swiss Film Awards

    Two debut features in writer-director Antoine Russbach’s “Those Who Work” and Anja Kofmel’s animated documentary “Chris the Swiss,” were the big winners at Friday night’s Swiss Film Awards, notching three plaudits each. Sold by Be For Films, “Those Who Work,” stars Belgian actor Olivier Gourmet, who has appeared in every single film by Jean-Pierre and [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content