The Strange One
The degrees of pusillanimity conducive to the action of a “sadistic bully” at Southern Military College are exhaustively presented, and go into the disaster described in Lumet’s The Hill, also the close call of Frankenheimer’s Seven Days in May.
The facts of the matter go under one’s hat, the culprit is ridden out on a rail.
Bosley Crowther (New York Times) notably could not follow them.
The destruction of an honest cadet is the main part, the subornation of a cadet as witness completes the picture.
The insular rape victim and the one-eyed auto mechanic.
Garfein’s superb analysis of Pygmalion and The Taming of the Shrew, closely related to Wyler’s The Collector, Hayers’ The Trap, Rakoff’s Hoffman, and Roeg’s Castaway, not to mention Capra’s It Happened One Night, Cocteau’s La Belle et la BÍte, Wilder’s The Apartment, Fellini’s Le Notte Di Cabiria or Giulietta degli spiriti, “et cet’ra, et cet’ra, and, of course, et cet’ra.”
Aaron Copland’s score is Music for a Great City.
J. Hoberman of the Village Voice speaks for many a critic, it may be, in finding “little psychological sense”. Andrew Sarris (The American Cinema), “his style, such as it is, consists of little more than contrived hysteria.”
A painstakingly accurate study, over every inch of ground in the bewildering city, of the nice girl (Baker) ready to leave the face of the earth, and the nice guy (Meeker, who achieves a level of drunkenness hard to match), in the middle of nowhere, near bridge and river (cinematography by Eugen Shuftan), a basement apartment like a prison cell or a zoo cage or a cave.