Tribute to a Bad Man (30-Mar-1956)|
Director: Robert Wise
Writer: Michael Blankfort
From short story by: Jack Schaefer
Music by: Miklos Rozsa
Producer: Sam Zimbalist
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Review by Gary Mayer (posted on 10-Sep-2007)
This is a stunning western that had not previously come to my attention.
Studio execs made a 'wise' (no pun intended) move in axing Spencer Tracy. Cagney was excellent and much better suited for a western. I think Tracy would have had difficulty warming up to the 'kid' from Pennsylvania (look how long it took him to accept Sidney Poitier's character in 'Guess Who's Coming to Dinner'); and, Grace Kelly was no match for Irene Pappas. How could Grace have played an ex-dance hall girl convincingly? How could Grace Kelly even have accepted the role, having to portray a platonic live-in akin to a maid?
Did the entire cast, along with the producer/director, wait six weeks for Tracy to show up on the set?
I'm glad Cagney was humble enough to accept the role as a second choice; but, it re-assured me that Tracy was an aloof stuffed shirt, just like his lover, Katherine H. It appears that they thought they owned Hollywood, but Robert was (w)Wise enough to pull the strings.
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