Blending the mythological power of the Brothers Grimm fable with Southern Gothic creepiness, this is the story of two children guarding their dead father's stash of stolen money from a seemingly benevolent but secretly malicious preacher, played with unhinged gusto by Robert Mitchum. The film boasts expressionistic lighting effects and memorably stylized art design. Mitchum, usually the paragon of cool, here gives a flamboyantly over-the-top performance as the psychotic villain. Shelley Winters is heartbreaking as the children's weak-minded and ill-fated mother, while the indomitable Lillian Gish is an inspiration as their lion-hearted protectress. DIR Charles Laughton; SCR James Agee, from the novel by Davis Grubb; PROD Paul Gregory. U.S., 1955, b&w, 93 min. NOT RATED

AFI Member passes accepted.

Charles Laughton
93 Minutes
Crime drama
Saturday, July 06, 2019