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The River's Edge (1957)

Approved | | Adventure, Crime, Drama | 1957 (UK)
A murderous thief on the run with stolen loot forces a poor rancher to guide him across the desert into Mexico. Accompanying them is the rancher's wife, who happens to be the killer's former girlfriend.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Nardo Denning
...
Ben Cameron
...
Margaret Fowler
...
Chet
...
...
Floyd Barry (as Byron K. Foulger)
Tom McKee ...
U.S. Border Patrol Captain
Frank Gerstle ...
Harry Castleton
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Storyline

A murderous thief on the run with stolen loot forces a poor rancher to guide him across the desert into Mexico. Accompanying them is the rancher's wife, who happens to be the killer's former girlfriend.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

It was kill ... or be killed ... all the way down to The River's Edge.


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

1957 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Flucht nach Mexiko  »

Filming Locations:


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(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Average Shot Length = ~9.2 seconds. Median Shot Length = ~9.4 seconds. See more »

Goofs

When Nardo Denning turns the Thunderbird around and tries to run down Meg, the fender skirt on the passenger side flies off. A later shot of the car as it pursues her shows the skirt still in place. See more »

Quotes

Ben Cameron: A slug in my head right now, would send 30,000 volts through yours.
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Connections

Referenced in Riverdale: Chapter One: The River's Edge (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

You'll Never Know
(uncredited)
Music by Harry Warren
Lyrics by Mack Gordon
Played on the jukebox and heard often throughout the picture
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User Reviews

 
I'm just a farmer, Denning, I don't know what the word "impeccable" means. If it means what it sounds like, uh, congratulations.
24 February 2013 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

The River's Edge is directed by Allan Dwan and adapted to screenplay by James Leicester from the story "The Highest Mountain" written by Harold Jacob Smith. It stars Ray Milland, Anthony Quinn and Debra Paget. A CinemaScope production with colour by De Luxe, music is by Louis Forbes and cinematography by Harold Lipstein.

Ben Cameron (Quinn) and his wife Meg (Paget) are struggling to make their New Mexico ranch function as a happy working home. Enter shifty Nardo Denning (Milland), who has a past with Meg and has ulterior motives for suddenly appearing on the scene…

"You know, if you were on a desert island with that guy and there was nothing but rocks, pretty soon he would have all the rocks moved to his side of the beach"

Falling somewhere in the void between Noir and Western, The River's Edge is a delightfully sly and compact thriller that also boasts gorgeous location photography and splendidly garish colour compositions.

It was kill or be killed all the way down to The River's Edge!

Narratively it's a straight case of two men and one girl who wind up on the lam, with the foxy gal bouncing back and forth between the two men's affections like a ping-pong ball on legs. All three characters are flawed, their means and motivations deliberately scratchy, it makes for a near kinky noir love triangle, with dialogue that's often cynical or deliberately obtuse. The two guys are polar opposites, Denning is a spiv like manipulator, a dastard, Cameron is muscular but sincere, while Meg, with her shock of red hair scorching the landscape, has a murky past and is either confused or playing the cards close to her chest? Something is going to have to give...

In the mix is violence, potent violence at that, a suitcase full of cash and the perils of the terrain that the trio traverse. It's with the latter where Dwan and Lipstein come to the fore, the Scope photography and framing of characters amongst the Mexican locales (Cuernavaca, Morelos), really belies the B budget afforded the production. Were it not for some cheap looking studio interior shots-the remarkable recovery of one character after an accident-and a twist in the ending that should have gone the other way, this would be better thought of than just being considered a B movie culter.

Neon pinks and grubby greens mingle with shady grey characters for a whole bunch of fun. 7.5/10

Fox's Region 1 DVD features a very decent print and a detailed commentary track by noir aficionados James Ursini and Alain Silver.


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