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.
Harry Keach has been widowed for two years and works as a bulldozer operator on a construction crew. Despite having a strong work ethic, that working life is cut short when health issues lead to him no longer being able to do the job. Harry has a strained relationship with his two grown children: Nina, who, with her insurance salesman husband, seems more concerned about what they can receive in material possessions through her relationship with Harry; and Howard, who still lives with Harry. Howard is an aspiring writer, but as a person who lives in the here and now would rather hang out having fun than find work in a steady job when he isn't writing. Despite Harry loving Howard and Howard loving Harry, the strain in their relationship is brought to the fore as Howard can work but won't while Harry wants to work but can't. Especially while they still live together, the two have to come to a new understanding as they move into the next phase of their respective lives, Howard's which ...Written by
Newman's star power makes this better than it would be
The narrative line of the script is scattered and seems to pick up ideas and problems and then drop them without resolution to tackle some other tangential issue. The issues all pertain to the relationship between the father and son but it would have been better to focus more on their interaction and less on exterior forces. Benson tries in the lead but just is not that strong of a screen presence especially when competing with Newman's star power. The rest of the cast is certainly talented even if what they are handed character wise is diffuse. It is interesting to see some like Freeman and Barkin who went on to long careers just starting out. Not a bad film but very average.
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