Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, November 3, 2011


Jacob (Glenn Ford) stakes his claim
LUST FOR GOLD (1949). Director: S. Sylvan Simon.

Inspired by the true legends of the Lost Dutchman mine in the Superstitious Mountains of Arizona, the major portion of this film takes place in the last century with modern-day framing sequences that carry their own interest. Jacob "Dutch" Walz (Glenn Ford) commits murder to preserve the secret of the mine's location, then goes to town to stake his claim. There he encounters duplicitous Julia Thomas (Ida Lupino), who owns a bakery but dreams of a better life that she knows her husband (Gig Young) will never provide. So she begins a romance with an unsuspecting Walz. Lupino and Young are fine, and Ford is especially good as one of the more unpleasant characters he's played. If the main story's climactic gun battle near the mine weren't enough, the absorbing film also boasts a terrific cliff side fight as the modern-day story's thrilling finale.William Prince, Edgar Buchanan, Paul Ford and even Percy Helton [as a barber] are members of the supporting cast, and all are swell.

Verdict: Snappy and extremely entertaining. ***1/2.

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