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The Fugitive Kind (1960)

Not Rated | | Drama , Romance | 14 April 1960 (USA)
Valentine "Snakeskin" Xavier, a trouble-prone drifter trying to go straight, wanders into a small Mississippi town looking for a simple and honest life but finds himself embroiled with problem-filled women.

Director:

Sidney Lumet

Writers:

Tennessee Williams (screenplay), Meade Roberts (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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2 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Marlon Brando ... Valentine 'Snakeskin' Xavier
Anna Magnani ... Lady Torrance
Joanne Woodward ... Carol Cutrere
Maureen Stapleton ... Vee Talbot
Victor Jory ... Jabe Torrance
R.G. Armstrong ... Sheriff Jordan Talbot (as R. G. Armstrong)
Virgilia Chew Virgilia Chew ... Nurse Porter
Ben Yaffee Ben Yaffee ... 'Dog' Hamma
Joe Brown Jr. Joe Brown Jr. ... 'Pee Wee' Binnings
Mary Perry Mary Perry
Madame Spivy Madame Spivy ... Ruby Lightfoot (as Spivy)
John Baragrey ... David Cutrere
Sally Gracie Sally Gracie ... Dolly Hamma
Lucille Benson ... Beulah Binnings
Emory Richardson Emory Richardson ... Uncle Pleasant, the Conjure Man
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Storyline

Having fled New Orleans to avoid arrest, the undeniably alluring Valentine "Snakeskin" Xavier (Val), a trouble-prone guitar-playing drifter, wanders into a small Mississippi town aiming to go straight and lead a quiet, simple life. He gets a job in the dry goods store owned by a sexually-frustrated middle-aged woman named Lady Torrence, whose sadistic elderly husband, Jabe, is dying. With an obscure past and passions of her own, Lady finds herself attracted to Val, pulsating with passion anew, as he presents an arousing antidote to her bitter marriage and small-town hum-drum life, but also vying for Val's attention are the alcoholic, sex-crazed Carol Cutrere and the unhappily-married Vee Talbot. Each bring their share of problems into Val's plans, himself equally tempted by these women though he succumbs to the charms of Lady. But the jealous Jabe is friends with Sheriff Talbot, who's also Vee's wife - things can't possibly end well for Val and Lady. The screenplay by Meade Roberts ... Written by pdlussier1

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

...and now the screen is struck by lightning ! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 April 1960 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Tennessee Williams' The Fugitive Kind See more »

Filming Locations:

Milton, New York, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Pennebaker Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The little Hudson River town of Milton, New York has a plaque from the production company for this film, thanking the city for its cooperation during the shoot. Even in the early 1970s, Milton had no traffic light on its main street and could still pass for a small town in the Deep South. Artists had studios in the "store." Tall ceilings allowed for suggestion of a second floor via a dummy staircase. The post office was one of the three attached storefronts. See more »

Quotes

Valentine 'Snakeskin' Xavier: I got myself into a situation here, Lady.
Lady Torrance: No, you're not fooling me, mister. She's waiting for you outside.
Valentine 'Snakeskin' Xavier: No.
Lady Torrance: In her car, yes.
Valentine 'Snakeskin' Xavier: No...
Valentine 'Snakeskin' Xavier: I want you to understand.
Lady Torrance: What?
Valentine 'Snakeskin' Xavier: I got myself into a situation here that I can't get out of.
Lady Torrance: Not in a town like this.
Valentine 'Snakeskin' Xavier: I've been threatened with violence if I stay here through the night.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The 77th Annual Academy Awards (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

Blanket Roll Blues
Music by Kenyon Hopkins
Lyrics by Tennessee Williams
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Too good for America!
29 August 2008 | by benoit-3See all my reviews

This story flopped as a play and as a film. That's too bad because that happens to be Tennessee Williams' most revealing play about the dark underbelly of racism, violence, vigilantes, lynchings and social injustice in the Deep South. Be warned: This ain't "Gone With the Wind". Its subject matter couldn't have been very popular with American audiences at any time or any place. Even today, Jabe (Hades), the king of the Underworld, where he keeps his Persephone/Eurydice (Lady) prisoner, sounds an awful lot like what George W. Bush will probably sound like in his declining years, uttering curses and maledictions against life, knowledge, science, progress, social change and uppity Negroes. I think the film works because it makes no concession to realism and frankly asserts the story's mythological elements. Lumet, Magnani, Brando, Jory, Stapleton, Armstrong and Woodward make it work and deliver a film and performances that are bigger than life and worthy of the best European art films of the period. Kudos for the set design, the art direction, the music (by Kenyon Hopkins) and the photography. This is a film you can't help but watch in absolute awe at the guts it took.


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