The Outrage (1964)

the outrage poster 1964 movie
8.0 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Acting: 8/10
Visuals: 9/10

Good looking picture with an interesting story

Unfortunately a remake of an even better film

 
Movie Info

Movie Name:  The Outrage

Studio:  MGM

Genre(s):  Western/Drama/Mystery/Suspense

Release Date(s):  October 8, 1964

MPAA Rating:  Not Rated

outrage-rape-paul-newman-laurence-harvey-claire-bloom

Yeah, I’m a Mexican bandit…want to make something of it?

A preacher (William Shatner), a prospector (Howard Da Silva), and a snakeoil salesman (Edward G. Robinson) find themselves awaiting a train and the snakeoil man learns that the priest and prospector have just witnessed a trial that shocked them. They hear the story of the rape of a woman named Nina Wakesfield (Claire Bloom) and the murder of her husband Colonel Wakefield (Laurence Harvey) by a known criminal named Juan Carrasco (Paul Newman) in the woods outside of town. The story has shocked the community and the stories of all three men differ, but what is the truth?

outrage-william-shatner-howard-da-silva-claire-bloom-trial

Yo, that lady’s crazy!!!

Directed by Martin Ritt, The Outrage is an adaptation of Akira Kurosawa’s 1950 Rashōmon. Kurosawa gets script credit, and Kurosawa based his film on the 1915 story “Rashōmon” and and the 1922 story “In a Grove” by Ryunosuke Akutagawa. It received moderate reviews but is often collected with other Paul Newman films.

The Outrage is an interesting film, but an unnecessary film. Rashōmon is such a great film and just as accessible as this film. If the film had altered a lot to Americanize the movie, it would be different. The movie however is a pretty straightforward adaptation. Unlike The Magnificent Seven which adapted Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai, The Outrage just doesn’t feel different enough from Rashōmon, but that doesn’t mean it is a bad film by any means.

I will take this baby where no baby has gone before!!!

I will take this baby where no baby has gone before!!!

The Outrage looks great. The framing of a lot of the shots in the train station scenes closely resemble the shots in Rashōmon. The style of the film is where The Outrage is different. The rape/murder location and the trial location all are interesting adaptation. The “Eastern” style translates nicely to a “Western” style. The desert and cowboy style is a nice comparison to the samurai style.  Of course the style established by Rashōmon (the telling of one story from the perspective of the tellers), is the real hitch of the film and carried out well.

outrage-paul-newman-laurence-harvey

Hey Paul…what’s up with your face? Oh, not cool, dude…

The choice to cast Paul Newman as a Mexican outlaw is a little questionable. Fortunately the film is in black-and-white so his famous blue-eyes are less noticable. Casting like this was common at the time. In Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Mickey Rooney plays the horribly racist Mr. Yunioshi, and in Touch of Evil, Charlton Heston plays a Mexican official…It just doesn’t seem right in today’s age.

The Outrage is worth seeking out, but only after you’ve seen Rashōmon. If you’ve seen The Outrage and not Rashōmon, go back and see the original. The movie has a nice collection of actors and it is interesting to see the early role by William Shatner as the preacher. The Outrage, like its predecessor, is definitely a thinking movie, and it is interesting look at the human character.

Related Links:

Rashōmon (1950)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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