Pursued (1947)

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Robert Mitchum plays a rancher who has been stalked since childhood by a one armed man with a grudge, without ever knowing why.

The themes of Pursued are twisted psychology, sibling rivalry, jealousy and revenge presented in shadow-steeped photography, which is narrated by Mitchum who is on top form as the hapless anti-hero who is unwillingly forced to kill by circumstances beyond his control. All of these ingredients point to the same thing: I don’t care how many stetsons or six guns are on show, this is Film Noir and the intelligent character driven plot is all very Freudian, which makes for a very unusual hybrid of genres. It looks fantastic and has a solid supporting cast, the pick of which is Judith Anderson as the matriarch whose guilty secret lies at the core of the events within which Mitchum finds himself caught up.

I’d never heard of this film before and I’m glad I stumbled upon it. If you like FilmNoir, westerns, or classic film in general, it’s well worth hunting down a copy.

8/10

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