Honest and hard-working Texas rancher Homer Bannon has a conflict with his unscrupulous, selfish, arrogant and egotistical son Hud, who sank into alcoholism after accidentally killing his brother in a car crash.
Brick, an alcoholic ex-football player, drinks his days away and resists the affections of his wife, Maggie. His reunion with his father, Big Daddy, who is dying of cancer, jogs a host of memories and revelations for both father and son.
Drifter Chance Wayne returns to his hometown after many years of trying to make it in the movies. Arriving with him is a faded film star he picked up along the way, Alexandra Del Lago. ... See full summary »
Hud Bannon is a ruthless young man who tarnishes everything and everyone he touches. Hud represents the perfect embodiment of alienated youth, out for kicks with no regard for the consequences. There is bitter conflict between the callous Hud and his stern and highly principled father, Homer. Hud's nephew Lon admires Hud's cheating ways, though he soon becomes aware of Hud's reckless amorality to bear him anymore. In the world of the takers and the taken, Hud is a winner. He's a cheat, but, he explains "I always say the law was meant to be interpreted in a lenient manner." Written by
Largely because of the recent tragedy in their lives, Patricia Neal felt she couldn't leave her husband and surviving children at their home in England for the two months it would take to shoot the picture. Martin Ritt offered to let her take a break to go home between the Texas locations and the Hollywood studio portion of the shoot. See more »
The position of Lon's arm changes as he as Hud share a drink and talk about a girl after the pig contest. See more »
In another review of Hud, someone says that he or she saw all the story needed from the first fifteen minutes, but that is the great art of this film. No one changes; there is no moment when Hud is struck down like Saul, on his way to town, and shown the error of his ways. He and Homer continue to butt their heads against the proverbial wall. Homer doesn't magically revive as he lays by the side of the road, and there is no phony deathbed reconciliation. One shudders to think of the mess that would be made out of this story today. Inspirational music would pour from the speakers; Hud would promise to do well by his father and on returning home from the funeral, he would find Patricia Neal had returned, while deWilde and he agreed to work the ranch together. Sometimes I wonder if director Ritt chose black and white so he would not be tempted to close the story on a more upbeat note.
It is a debatable question whether Hud, or McMurtry's other masterpiece, Last Picture Show, could be made today. Studios don't like 'downers;' they don't fill the multiplexes and bring in the 50M gross weekends.
The casting is inspired; Newman and deWilde do look like the offspring of Douglas. Maybe it's the cowboy hats that do it, but there is a flintiness to their eyes that binds them. Neal is simply beautiful in a way that many will never understand. Watch the performances, and note how each person makes room for the others. There is only four of them, so it is not an ensemble, but Newman is especially good at avoiding the scenery chewing that so many posters here confuse with good acting.
This rates a true 10.
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