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6,138 Ratings

Rebel Without a Cause

Directed by Nicholas Ray
United States, 1955
Drama, Romance


While searching for stability in a new town, a juvenile delinquent forms an alliance with a misguided classmate and a local girl. However, when her boyfriend violently confronts him with a challenge to drag race, new complications arise.

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Rebel Without a Cause Directed by Nicholas Ray

Awards & Festivals

Academy Awards

1956 | 3 nominations including: Best Actor in a Supporting Role

National Film Preservation Board

1990 | Winner: National Film Registry

I want to focus on few of the moments from Nicholas Ray’sRebel Without A Cause, which is re-released in the UK this week on a beautifully restored digital print, that, upon initial inspection, do not appear to make much sense. For some, these moments would likely stick in the critical craw and end up in the column marked “cons”. Yet, the “errors” in Rebel… – the bits that don’t quite add up – could be argued to be the key constituents of its greatness…
April 18, 2014
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Rebel is very much a film of jumps, jabs and pivots, dynamic shifts in perspective on a cut, lightning negotiations of physical or psychological space (or both at once)… It is a film of visions, alternately magical (the deserted house pointed out by Plato from the overlook outside the Planetarium), terrifying… and both at once (the immensity of the heavens and the destruction of the universe in the Planetarium).
December 25, 2013
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I saw Rebel without a Cause one again yesterday, August 7th, Nicholas Ray’s birthday. I noticed many other cinematographic details I hadn’t noticed before, of the kind best left for the self-proclaimed experts – but I did notice again how, throughout the whole film, Jim/James Dean is always filmed ‘above’ the other characters, creating a topography on the screen which draws us to the different strata of the drama of each character.
August 08, 2013
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