Kraft Suspense Theatre: Season 1, Episode 22

Portrait of an Unknown Man (16 Apr. 1964)

TV Episode  -   -  Crime | Drama | Mystery
7.6
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 34 users  
Reviews: 3 user

A mysterious unfriendly man comes to a remote mountain town to buy supplies and causes the locals to wonder why he is there. He further puzzles them when he sets up a homestead next to a ... See full summary »

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Title: Portrait of an Unknown Man (16 Apr 1964)

Portrait of an Unknown Man (16 Apr 1964) on IMDb 7.6/10

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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
...
David Wolfe
...
Ellen Ramsey
...
Harvey Farnsworth
...
Hugh Ramsey
Ron Foster ...
Reverend Larsen
Rico Alaniz ...
Juan Vallejo
E.J. André ...
Cob Wiley (as E.J. Andre)
House Peters Jr. ...
Sheriff Willard
George Chandler ...
Doc Baines
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Storyline

A mysterious unfriendly man comes to a remote mountain town to buy supplies and causes the locals to wonder why he is there. He further puzzles them when he sets up a homestead next to a long played out mine and puts up a 'No Trespassing' sign. Meanwhile, the owner of the town's General Store and his daughter are battling their own demons. Written by dubchi

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Mystery

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Release Date:

16 April 1964 (USA)  »

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(Pathé)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Stranger In Town
12 December 2009 | by (brighton, ma) – See all my reviews

This is a solid Kraft entry featuring Clint Walker playing a man who drives up a mountain, has his car break down, dumps it off the road, walks a mile or so up to a tiny village, where he buys supplies, then hikes on even higher to small cabin, where he doesn't want to be disturbed. Walker is extremely unfriendly, though not hostile, shows no desire to engage in small talk with his new neighbors; and he refuses to divulge his reason for moving to his new home or what it is he plans to do up there.

The locals are understandably suspicious of this stranger in town and begin to gossip and speculate about his reasons for being there. They even contact the local police so as to gain some information on him. As the story develops, this is one dysfunctional community. The general store owner exerts a strange control over his shy, insecure daughter, who's afraid to leave home and is apparently friendless. A local man, played by a young Robert Duvall, is interested in marrying her but she has a bad history with him going back to her teenage years. The minister acts as mediator, and on the side attempts to befriend the stranger up in the cabin and is told in no uncertain terms to leave the property.

Conflicts in this isolated community eventually involve the solitary newcomer who, as it turns out, is not such a bad fellow after all. He has, like the storekeeper's daughter, what we would now call issues, and as events unfold he bonds well with this young woman, who took a liking to him from the moment he arrived. The story is not particularly original, and I could see the resolution coming before the half-way point, as I suspect most seasoned viewers could. Yet generic as it is, it's a nicely developed episode, well acted by all. Clint Walker is highly effective as the quiet giant of a man who doesn't want to be disturbed. Mala Powers skillfully and sensitively portrays the young woman; while Jay C. Flippen, who looks ghastly here, like he's at death's door, is credible as her bully of a father.

I rate this episode as above average but not excellent. The writing is decent but far from brilliant, the directing, competent, the photography, outstanding. If this were a book I'd call it a good read; untaxing, satisfying, it accomplishes its modest goals nicely.


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