IMDb > Lonely Are the Brave (1962)
Lonely Are the Brave
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Lonely Are the Brave (1962) More at IMDbPro »

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Down 29% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Dalton Trumbo (screenplay)
Edward Abbey (novel)
View company contact information for Lonely Are the Brave on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
14 June 1962 (Mexico) See more »
Life can never cage a man like this!
A fiercely independent cowboy arranges to have himself locked up in jail in order to then escape with an old friend who has been sentenced to the penitentiary. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Nominated for BAFTA Film Award. Another 2 wins See more »
User Reviews:
Be A Cowboy Hero See more (77 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Kirk Douglas ... John W. "Jack" Burns

Gena Rowlands ... Jerry Bondi

Walter Matthau ... Sheriff Morey Johnson
Michael Kane ... Paul Bondi

Carroll O'Connor ... Hinton

William Schallert ... Harry

George Kennedy ... Deputy Sheriff Gutierrez

Karl Swenson ... Rev. Hoskins
William Mims ... First Deputy Arraigning Burns (as Bill Mims)
Martin Garralaga ... Old Man
Lalo Rios ... Prisoner
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Bill Bixby ... Airman in Helicopter (uncredited)
Chuck Hamilton ... Diner Patron (uncredited)
George Keymas ... Deputy (uncredited)
Harry Lauter ... Deputy in Canyon (uncredited)
Bill Raisch ... One Arm (uncredited)
Dan Sheridan ... Deputy Glynn (Comic Book) (uncredited)
Ray Spiker ... Convict (uncredited)
Vince St. Cyr ... Navajo Prisoner Who Escapes (uncredited)
Stuart Wade ... Desk Sergeant (uncredited)
Charles Wagenheim ... Vagrant Convict (uncredited)

Dan White ... Convict (uncredited)
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Directed by
David Miller 
Writing credits
Dalton Trumbo (screenplay)

Edward Abbey (novel "Brave Cowboy")

Produced by
Edward Lewis .... producer
Original Music by
Jerry Goldsmith 
Cinematography by
Philip H. Lathrop (director of photography) (as Philip Lathrop)
Film Editing by
Leon Barsha 
Art Direction by
Alexander Golitzen 
Robert Emmet Smith  (as Robert Smith)
Set Decoration by
George Milo 
Makeup Department
Larry Germain .... hair stylist
Dave Grayson .... makeup artist
Bud Westmore .... makeup artist
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Tom Shaw .... assistant director
David Silver .... assistant director
Ray Taylor Jr. .... assistant director (uncredited)
Sound Department
Waldon O. Watson .... sound
Frank H. Wilkinson .... sound
James R. Alexander .... sound (uncredited)
James Curtis .... sound (uncredited)
Arthur B. Smith .... sound (uncredited)
Bob Herron .... stunts (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Don Christie .... still photographer (uncredited)
Tim Donahue .... photographic coordinator (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Stanley Kufel .... wardrobe (uncredited)
Peter V. Saldutti .... wardrobe (uncredited)
Music Department
Joseph Gershenson .... music supervisor
David Tamkin .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Other crew
Richard Michaels .... script supervisor (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies
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Additional Details

Also Known As:
107 min
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Westrex Recording System)
Argentina:Atp | Australia:PG | Finland:K-16 | Germany:12 (DVD rating) | Portugal:M/12 | UK:A (original rating) | USA:TV-PG | USA:Approved (PCA #20037) | West Germany:12 (f)

Did You Know?

After Kirk Douglas read the novel "The Brave Cowboy" by Edward Abbey, he purchased the rights to it and gave the project to his friend Dalton Trumbo. Douglas said Trumbo's screenplay was perfect, the best he had ever read, and he didn't change one word of it.See more »
Errors made by characters (possibly deliberate errors by the filmmakers): The helicopter pilot reported that Burns fired at his tail rotor (to allow him to land safely). However, without actually seeing the trajectory of the bullet, angle of the rifle, or the impact (it missed), the pilot had absolutely no way of knowing Burns' intentions.See more »
[first lines]
[to his horse, as he watches jets leave contrails across the sky]
Jack Burns:Time we took off, too.
See more »
Movie Connections:


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5 out of 5 people found the following review useful.
Be A Cowboy Hero, 13 April 2008
Author: bkoganbing from Buffalo, New York

Kirk Douglas has said often enough that Lonely Are The Brave is his favorite among the films he's done. I think of it the same way that Bette Davis says about Dark Victory that the role of Judith Traherne is 98% of me.

Like the film's Jack Burns Kirk Douglas has charted his own way through life in Hollywood the way Jack Burns does. Burns's problem is that he's a man born a century too late.

Run another of Kirk Douglas's classic westerns Man Without A Star side by side. Dempsey Rae in that film isn't too much different from Jack Burns, in fact they have opinions on certain subjects almost identical.

But the frontier that Dempsey dealt with in that film has changed, it just doesn't exist any more. But Burns won't recognize it. I'm also not so sure how much film and television have influenced 1962's Jack Burns in the way a cowboy should behave.

Kirk is returning to his home town from God knows what and meets up with Gena Rowlands who is married to his best friend Michael Kane. Kane's in jail for helping illegal immigrants cross the US/Mexican border. What to do but be a cowboy hero and bust him from jail. So Kirk gets himself in a nasty bar fight with one armed Bill Raisch and gets tossed in sheriff Walter Matthau's jail. While there Deputy George Kennedy works him over.

So when Kirk's ready to bust jail, Kane refuses to go to his surprise. But that doesn't stop Kirk who breaks loose and the chase is on.

The non-conformist part of Jack Burns certainly must have appealed to Kirk Douglas. He invests so much of himself in Burns it's hard to tell where Kirk leaves off and Burns begins. And he's one of the most appealing of all the roles Kirk Douglas has. You root for this law breaking maverick every step of the way.

Mention must also go to Walter Matthau as the wise and laconic sheriff who really does understand Douglas's mentality as no one else really does. In a lot of ways it's like the Charles Bronson classic Death Hunt where Mountie Lee Marvin truly is sorry he's on this particular job. Of course if Douglas had actually killed someone in eluding the law, Matthau's duty would have been clear.

The ending is truly an ironic one as the cowboy loses that part of him that makes him a unique American icon.

Absolutely don't miss Lonely Are The Brave when it is broadcast, especially fans of Kirk Douglas.

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