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The Wild One (1953)

Approved  |   |  Drama  |  February 1954 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 10,670 users  
Reviews: 100 user | 32 critic

Two rival motorcycle gangs terrorize a small town after one of their leaders is thrown in jail.

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(screenplay), (based on a story by), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Wild One (1953)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Johnny Strabler / Narrator
Mary Murphy ...
Kathie Bleeker
Robert Keith ...
Sheriff Harry Bleeker
...
Chino
...
Sheriff Stew Singer
Peggy Maley ...
Mildred
Hugh Sanders ...
Charlie Thomas
...
Frank Bleeker
John Brown ...
Bill Hannegan
...
Art Kleiner
Robert Osterloh ...
Ben
William Vedder ...
Jimmy
Yvonne Doughty ...
Britches
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Del Tenney
Edit

Storyline

Cop-hating Johnny Strabler is recounting the fateful events that led up to the "whole mess" as he calls it, his role in the mess and whether he could have stopped it from happening. The Black Rebels, a motorcycle gang of which Johnny is the leader, cause a ruckus using intimidation wherever they go, with their actions bordering on the unlawful. On the day of the mess, they invade a motorcycle racing event, at which they cause a general disturbance culminating with one of the gang members stealing a second place trophy to give to Johnny. Despite not being the larger winning trophy, it symbolizes to Johnny his leadership within the group. Their next stop is a small town where their disturbance and intimidation tactics continue. Some in town don't mind their arrival as long as they spend money. Harry Bleeker, the local sheriff, doesn't much like them but is so ineffective and weak that he doesn't do anything to stop them, much to the annoyance of some of the other townsfolk, who see the ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Marlon Brando! Driven Too Far By His Own Hot Blood! See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

February 1954 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Hot Blood  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

To prepare for his role, Marlon Brando renewed his love for motorcycles, practising his cycling technique and selecting his own wardrobe, which he wore to and from the studio. Brando also spent time with the real-life biker gangs to absorb their mannerisms and speech. See more »

Goofs

When Johnny knocks Chino through the window of the clothing shop it is obvious that there is no glass in the window, only balsa wood mullions (i.e. the bars between panes of a multi-pane window). See more »

Quotes

Kathie Bleeker: Where are you going when you leave here?
Johnny: [he pauses and just shrugs]
Kathie Bleeker: Don't you know?
Johnny: Oh, man. we're just gonna go!
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Movie Orgy (1968) See more »

Soundtracks

Blues for Brando
Music by Leith Stevens
Shorty Rogers and his Orchestra:
Shorty Rogers, Conrad Gozo, Ray Linn, Maynard Ferguson, Thomas Reeves - trumptes; Harry Betts, Bob Enevoldsen, Jimmy Kneeper - trombone; Bud Shank, Herb Geller - alto sax; Willis Holman, Bill Perkins - tenor sax; Jimmy Giuffre, Bob Cooper - alto sax; John Grasse - French horn; Paul Sarmento - tuba; Russ Freeman - piano; Joe Mondragon - bass; Shelly Manne - drums.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Brando and his motorcycle gang ride into town...
2 May 2007 | by (U.S.A.) – See all my reviews

MARLON BRANDO rides into town leading a pack of wild motorcycle riders who proceed to terrorize a hick town before LEE MARVIN shows up and gets into a drunken fight with Brando (as Johnny). Meantime, Johnny flirts dangerously with a cop's daughter (MARY MURPHY) who runs a cafe. Her father is played by ROBERT KEITH, a lawman who's reticent about using his authority with a bunch of motorcycle thugs.

Tension builds when Keith manages to haul Lee Marvin off to jail. Brando's buddies manage to get a hold of one of the town bullies and put him in the jail cell with the drunken Marvin who has passed out. They then go on a wild rampage but not before some of the town's men decide to form a vigilante squad and go after Brando. Brando has a brief romantic fling with the girl who realizes loving him is a lost cause.

***** POSSIBLE SPOILER AHEAD ***** The plot moves swiftly to a conclusion once the girl is able to convince the authorities that he wasn't responsible for the death of an elderly bystander hit by a motorcycle.

Stanley Kramer production has a nice, tense background score by Leith Stevens.

Summing up: Early Brando is impressive to watch, but much of the dialog is very dated and anchored firmly in the 1950s by the slang and be-bop expressions and overall concept of the film.

Famous for the moment when a girl taunts him with: "What are you rebelling against?"

Brando's terse reply: "What have you got?"


9 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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