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4.4 out of 5 stars 47 customer reviews

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(Jan 21, 2003)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Robert Mitchum plays a jaded Civil War hero who's pursued into the barren frontier wilderness by inner demons from his childhood pas t and real killers in the present. His passion for Teresa Wright, who plays his stepsister, leads to a fatal gunfight with her brot her. Embittered and intent on seeking revenge on their wedding night, Wright marries Mitchum, but the arrival of a mysterious stran ger out to settle an old score with Mitchum sidetracks her and leads to a startling climax of treachery, murder and shocking revelat ions.

Hollywood's first "psychological Western" and one of Robert Mitchum's best early films, Pursued boasts a dark scenario--by Niven (Duel in the Sun) Busch--about a man psychically scarred by a tragedy his mind refuses to recall. Modern-day audiences will have no trouble decoding the mystery, but that doesn't undercut the movie's dramatic power, or the rugged beauty of what's been put on screen by two master filmmakers, director Raoul Walsh and cameraman James Wong Howe. With seasoned professionalism, they accommodate all the newfangled Freudianism and smoothly integrate the bedrock Western with the inky film noir. The rest of the cast includes Teresa Wright (then Mrs. Busch) as Mitchum's adoptive sister, who may become his lover and/or his killer; Dean Jagger, smilingly sinister as a weasely in-law; and that grande dame of the Gothic, Judith Anderson, as a frontier matriarch. --Richard T. Jameson

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Teresa Wright, Robert Mitchum, Judith Anderson, Dean Jagger, Alan Hale
  • Directors: Raoul Walsh
  • Writers: Niven Busch
  • Producers: Milton Sperling
  • Format: Black & White, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Republic Pictures
  • DVD Release Date: January 21, 2003
  • Run Time: 101 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00007GZQG
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #107,277 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Pursued" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Looking at the other reviews for "Pursued", I don't think I have to repeat the plot summary for this dark, thoughtful 1947 western, directed by Raoul Walsh. While it may seem a bit dated in 2004, "Pursued" must have been considered very adult, compared to most westerns made in the 40s.
By 1947, Robert Mitchum was well on his way to stardom, just a few short years after "Bob" Mitchum was playing small roles in Hopalong Cassidy movies. This may not be one of his best acting performances, but he already had great presence and was to remain one of the most watchable actors in film. Teresa Wright, Judith Anderson and--as Mitchum's nemesis--Dean Jagger are all top-notch.
James Wong Howe's black and white photography is very effective, especially the scenes of Mitchum riding across the rugged New Mexico terrain. The film is often bleak and foreboding, a reflection of the main protagonist's tortured soul.
Except for a few lines here and there, I found the picture quality of the DVD to be excellent.
If you like westerns that are full of action, with clearly defined heroes and villains, "Pursued" may not be for you. If, on the other hand, you would like to own a more cerebral, expertly crafted piece of cinema than the average "shoot-em-up", this film has much to offer.
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Format: DVD
Jeb Rand (Robert Mitchum) can't understand why everybody hates him, or why so many people want to kill him, and he can't remember much of anything before Ma Callum (Judith Anderson) dragged him out of an orphan cellar and adopted him as one of her own. It's no wonder PURSUED is told as a flashback, this one is all about memory and remembering.
Ma Callum carries him to her home and throws her in a bed with his two new step-siblings, Thor (later played by Teresa Wright) and Adam (later John Rooney.) Ma Callum hurriedly bundles her charges together and they flee into the dark night - she too has inner demons to run from.
And so the stage is set for what has been called the first psychological western. You can safely throw in film noir and melodrama, as well. The psychological elements are a little too pronounced. Jeb suffers from nightmares - a pair of spurred boots moving about in the dark, flashes of light (gunfire?) Ma Callum could probably explain it all to him, but her only words of advice are "What you don't remember doesn't matter. Don't try to remember." The noir elements occur throughout, one of the most obvious is Forbidden Love - Jeb must have liked it when Ma Callum bounced him on that bed the first time; Jeb and Thor fall in love as adults. And then there are the claustrophobic deep shadows and dark corners in the Callum home and the sheer cliff walls of New Mexico. Veering back to the psychological aspects, brother Adam is jealous of Jeb and Thor's love, for more than one reason.
Add one-armed Grant Callum (Dean Jagger) as Jeb's nemesis and you've got a heady stew of melodrama.
This sounds like a recipe for a treacly mess, but it's not.
Read more ›
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Strangely, this black and white film lovingly restored through the auspices of Mr Martin Scorsese, is not your typical "western". Yes, there are shots fired and men ride horses, but the film is more dominated by two women with the concerns of love, family and hate than it is by the men, even though Mr Mitchum has never looked so dashing, and Dean Jagger is utterly wonderful as the vengeful evil scheming lawyer Uncle. Nor can one possibly ignore the score by Max Steiner who is in full orchestral flight, signalling every sigh, every moment of anger, or anguish. Freud gets a run, as does the legend of Cain and Abel, not to mention revenge tragedy. But above all CHANCE is the central motif - who should go to war, let's toss a coin to decide!!! Who should get the farm - let's toss a coin for it !!! And hero, put upon stepson and one of the characters PURSUED, Mr Mitchum, becomes a professional gambler.
The photography too, gives visual expression to the haunted lives therein. Nevertheless, it is the wonderful Dame Judith Anderson and Teresa Wright who run away with the acting accolades. Every moment they are on, we cannot stop watching them.
In short, well written, beautifully directed work a pleasure to view.
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Format: DVD
Western noir, and it's pretty good. Angular, shadowy black and white photography (by James Wong Howe), the story told in flashbacks and flashbacks within flashbacks with the resigned narration of Robert Mitchum, a relentless villian, a hidden family mystery that might contain hints of gunfights and New Mexico scenery.

Mitchum and Theresa Wright are very good as the possibly doomed couple. Wright seems to me to always have had a "nice girl next door" air about her that, I think, obscured what an excellent actress she was. Not just in Best Years of Our Lives, but look at her in The Little Foxes (where in her first movie she holds up very well with Bette Davis), The Men and Shadow of a Doubt. She knew how to deliver a line. Dean Jagger was almost as ubiquitous a character actor in the late Forties and Fifties as Thomas Mitchell had been in the Thirties and Forties. Jagger usually, it seemed to me, mostly played decent good guys or well intentioned weakings, and with deliberate speech. It was good to see him play so effectively a decisive-spoken out-and-out bad guy.

The DVD transfer is very good, but no extras
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