Bernie Goldsmith, a long-time civilian employee of the U.S. Navy is suspended as a security risk when investigators discover he had communist affiliations in his youth. Snubbed by former ... See full summary »
During World War II an American travels to Britain to sell an old house near London that belongs to his family. But he mets Susan Trimble who lives in the house and who is strictly against ... See full summary »
A gunfighter, stranded in the desert, comes across the aftermath of a stage robbery, in which all the passengers were killed. He takes one of the horses to ride to town to report the ... See full summary »
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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Promoter William Montague wants to buy the estate owned by the Daceys, Mrs. Dacey and her daughter Ena and son Todd, in order to build a resort hotel. When they turn him down, he produces a... See full summary »
Kern Shafter arrives at a Dakota army post to find it commanded by his old nemesis Edward Garnett. Shafter and Garnett despise each other, and the antagonism ripens in a competition for the... See full summary »
Olivia Harwood, missionary's widow, meets charming Mark Bellis, artist and rogue, on the ship taking them both back to 1890s London. When Olivia opens a lodging house Mark becomes her ... See full summary »
Bernie Goldsmith, a long-time civilian employee of the U.S. Navy is suspended as a security risk when investigators discover he had communist affiliations in his youth. Snubbed by former friends and harassed by others in the community, Goldsmith hires a lawyer to fight the charges and clear his good name. Written by
Ernest Borgnine plays a government employee who is accused of being a security risk and is fired. What this meant in early 1950s language was that he was suspected as a communist. However, the exact reasons for this as well as his accusers were never presented to him and defending himself against vague charges was difficult, if not impossible. Fortunately, he's defended by a capable lawyer (Ray Milland) and some members of the community come to his defense--though many of his so-called friends decide he MUST be disloyal and treat him and his family roughly. How can a guy defend himself if no witnesses or evidence are presented?! Such a film critical of the Red Scare of the early 1950s would never have been made much before 1956. Fortunately, by 1956, folks in Hollywood were willing to finally talk about the overreactions of the time. Now I am NOT saying communism was no threat--but the reaction was clearly a case where Constitutional rights were ignored. The film does a very nice job showing this and making Borgnine very sympathetic and real--sort of a great 'everyman'. And, I really liked Frank Faylen's portrayal as the mailman--he was quite the character! Overall, a very compelling film--and interesting as a portrait into our history.
By the way, this film was based on a real life government employee, Abraham Chasanow. However, Chasanow lived in Greenbelt, Maryland, a place that looks nothing like Riverview from the movie. A planned Levittown community, it was made up mostly of multifamily homes and were often blocky and unattractive--not the sort of place you'd want in a film. It looks a lot nicer now (they gave the places makeovers a few decades ago), by the way and I grew up only a few minutes from there.
Also, you might want to keep some Kleenex nearby. Some parts are very touching and emotional.
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