the thing with that "2-men-loving-1-woman" motif is that there's always one who is superior that the other in all aspects, which is so naive and ridiculous. There's usually something very stereotypical in the films, and for that i can never take classic Hollywood anything seriously but its surface level, a bumblegum
Uneven, enthralling and infuriating in equal measure - perhaps a result of its messy production process. A sophisticated exploration of moral codes and male identity but the quality of the script and performances vary wildly. But overall I strongly recommend watching this for Burton and Green's performances and its occasional moments of strangeness and visual brilliance, especially in the desert scenes.
During a military operation in Benghazi, Richard Burton (a Captain) upsets Curs Jürgens (a Major) by generally handling the pressure better, and also having a secret past with the Major's wife. This leads to a dangerous situation for Burton, as it soon becomes apparent that Jürgens is well aware that he doesn't have to get all of his men home in one piece. Another very good film from director Nicholas Ray.
Burton got some great dialogue, altho with that "voice" i'll take the bins out, would sound sublime. When he first sees Mrs Brand, the whole scene at the table, powerful. Love lost, man lost,woman left to take second best and the other trying to prove his worth as a man. Great stuff, and beautifully shot by Mr Ray. Some good ensemble actors too, a great Saturday viewing.
You may think war would be the main topic here. It is instead just the backdrop of a good old macho rivalry between two petty characters over a woman (not depicted with great care). Really disappointing. Godard is for sure a better director than he is a critic.
Sand, camels, men caught up in the impossible situation of war, a woman torn between two men...seems the hackneyed stuff of cinema, but in Nicholas Ray's skilled hands this is an unpredictable piece of drama, where the best guy may not get the woman as a prize and the hero may not be the one who can kill with the coolest gaze. Burton is impressive in his defeated cynicism while Curd Jurgens is perfectly wooden.
Cinematography by Michel Kelber. "Desire" list. Has there been another voice like Burton's voice? And that accompany it has had a look as equally rigorous, strictly pervasive? And that accompanying the voice and look presents such physical strength, such striking and marked physical strength? Robert Mitchum? Maybe, but not so inherently contradictory, so contradictorily human.