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Wild Youth (1960)

Approved | | Action, Crime, Drama | 22 August 1960 (USA)
Three teenage criminals break out of juvenile prison and head south to Mexico.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) (as Lester Wm. Berke) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Maddo
... Revas
... Madge
... Erickson
... Switch
... Frankie
Jan Brooks ... Donna
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Storyline

Originally release to theatres in the U.S. and Canada as "Wild Youth." - Escaping from a detention Honor Farm in New Mexico, "Swith" (Steve Rowland) and Frankie (Robert Arthur) find refuge with Donna (Jan Brooks), a farm girl who is all of sweet-sixteen, and is in love with Frankie. But "Switch". an expert with a switchblade knife is a constant menace to the romance. When their beat-up jalopy breaks down they hitchhike a ride with Revis (John Goddard), a killer and dope peddler wanted by the U.S. Border Patrol and the Mexican Rurales. With Revis is his dope-crazed moll, Madge (Carol Ohmart). In an ensuing conflict between Revie and "Switch" for a huge doll stuffed with dope (other than Madge),the border police are closing in. Video titles changed to "Naked Youth." Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939 @suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The 'WAY OUT" Guys...and the "MAKE OUT" Gals... See more »

Genres:

Action | Crime | Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

22 August 1960 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Naked Youth  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

Drugs on the run, not much fun
10 March 2002 | by See all my reviews

The most startling thing about Schreyer's drugs-on-the-run piece is the brazen 'lifting' of Elmer Bernstein's striking Frankie Machine title music, almost unchanged from 'The Man With The Golden Arm', as well as a recognisable chunk of Herrman's 'Vertigo' music .. such borrowings give this film a suggestion of artistry which it completely fails to justify.

In fact it is all very humdrum stuff, neither too wild or much naked either, come to that (and the 'youths' are getting on a bit as well). The most recognisable face in this rather tedious piece is Robert Hutton, who plays the unperturbable and cop. Of course it is he who buys the Mexican dolls into which the heroin is secreted, and then transported across the border, so poetic justice demands that it is he who has to find it again. Hutton was better used in such cult films as 'The Slime People' (1962), 'Colossus of New York' (1958) and a handful of others. Here he just looks vaguely engaged.

As Switch the knife happy thug on the run from the Honor Farm,(in a film in which, oddly, knives are the weapon of choice - even when a gun is around) Rowland is serviceable enough, although he could have made his performance more menacing. As it is, Switch veers uncertainly between aggression, indecisiveness and whining.

The best scene? Madge's swaying vision as her withdrawl sets in, done to Herrmann-'inspired' music. But even she's seen better days in William Castle's great 'House on Haunted Hill' (1958) or Hill's crazy 'Spider Baby' (1964).

A film mostly of interest for completists or those fanatical about this part of exploitation history.


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