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Lonely Are the Brave (1962)

Approved | | Drama, Western | 21 May 1962 (UK)
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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.

Director:

David Miller

Writers:

Dalton Trumbo (screenplay), Edward Abbey (novel)
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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Kirk Douglas ... John W. "Jack" Burns
Gena Rowlands ... Jerry Bondi
Walter Matthau ... Sheriff Morey Johnson
Michael Kane Michael Kane ... Paul Bondi
Carroll O'Connor ... Hinton
William Schallert ... Harry
George Kennedy ... Deputy Sheriff Gutierrez
Karl Swenson ... Rev. Hoskins
William Mims William Mims ... First Deputy Arraigning Burns (as Bill Mims)
Martin Garralaga ... Old Man
Lalo Rios Lalo Rios ... Prisoner
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Storyline

In order to free his best friend Paul Bondi from jail, cowboy Jack Burns gets himself imprisoned only to find out that Bondi does not want to escape. Thus Burns breaks out on his own and is afterwards being chased in the mountains by sheriff Johnson with a helicopter and jeeps. Written by Volker Boehm

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Life can never cage a man like this!

Genres:

Drama | Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

21 May 1962 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

The Last Cowboy See more »

Filming Locations:

Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Joel Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The helicopter used in the manhunt for Burns was a 1960 Bell 47J-2, serial number 1810. The FAA registration number is N8411E. This bird still lives and is used for aerial advertising. See more »

Goofs

A common Hollywood mistake when radios are used is to end the transmission with the phrase "Over and out". "Over" is used when turning the channel to the other speaker and "Out" is used when the transmission is finished, but one wouldn't say "Over and out". In this movie, radio use is inconsistent. Sometimes "Over and out" is used incorrectly, sometimes "Out" is used correctly and sometimes speakers switch back and forth without indicating anything at all. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[to his horse, as he watches jets leave contrails across the sky]
Jack Burns: Time we took off, too.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Villain (1979) See more »

Soundtracks

Oh! Susanna
Composed by Stephen Foster
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Natural Man Sacrificed to Progress
2 June 2005 | by writerasfilmcriticSee all my reviews

Can you imagine a time when a man could mount his horse and ride across the country, camping wherever he pleased? It's the kind of life Kirk Douglas was still living as the cowboy in "Lonely Are The Brave," long after the horse had given way to the horseless carriage and most people were living in towns and cities working for someone else. His only accommodation to the modern world are a pair of snips he keeps in a saddle bag for getting through barbed wire fences. A man like that is just bound to run up against the System, and that is precisely what happens when the cowboy arrives at the house of an old friend, whose wife they both loved. She tells him that her husband has been jailed for smuggling illegals across the border and the cowboy resolves to get arrested and help him break out. However, married life has changed his friend's perspective and he is content to do his time. After taking a beating from the sadistic jailer, played by George Kennedy, the cowboy escapes alone. The rest of the movie is about his attempt to elude the authorities, led by Walter Matthau as the efficient sheriff in charge of lesser lights who admires Douglas enough to hope he makes good his escape and who pursues him skillfully but without enthusiasm. Much of the story is about the relationship between the cowboy and his inexperienced young horse, who symbolizes the wild and free life being lost bit by bit. As they surmount a rugged mountain range, the extent of their trust, affection, and ties to the land become clear, while so-called civilization, aptly represented by a truckload of new toilets, threatens to do what the police can't.

This is a very good movie, well-shot, well-acted, well-written, and with a very poignant theme. In it, Kirk Douglas delivers one of his best performances.


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