The Lusty Men
The Lusty Men (1952)

In this modern-day western, former rodeo star Robert Mitchum, disabled by a series of accidents, hobbles back to his Oklahoma hometown. Aspiring bronco-buster Arthur Kennedy hires Mitchum to train him for an upcoming rodeo, promising that… More

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Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: September 24, 1952
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Critic Score: 100% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Variety Staff

A somewhat slow starter, once underway it is kept playing with growing interest under Nicholas Ray's firm direction.

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Dave Kehr
Chicago Reader

A masterpiece by Nicholas Ray -- perhaps the most melancholy and reflective of his films.

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Emanuel Levy

Ray's last b/w film captures the life of rodeo players with vivid details, lyrical images, and melnacholy mood, centering on a romantic triangle, well played by Arthur Kennedy, Susan Hayward, and especially Robert Mitchum as the aging champ.

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Time Out

The story isn't much (the security of family life versus the rootlessness and danger of working as a rodeo rider), but the situation is rich in emotional resonances which Ray conjures into life convincingly.

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Fernando F. Croce

A key American vision, with Ray's sense of failure and transience and grace pulled together into Mitchum's wink of soulful nonchalance

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TV Guide

Ray's direction is superb, and all three leads give bravura performances.

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Bosley Crowther
New York Times

The punch of the film is in its details of rodeo life as it is, and for this R. K. O. and Producer Jerry Wald have a dynamic film.

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Keith Phipps
The Dissolve

Portrayed with Ray's usual sympathy for outsiders, the central threesome are decent, flawed romantics .

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Leo Goldsmith
Not Coming to a Theater Near You

Functions as mini-ethnography, laying bare the alluring and dangerous world of bronc- and braman-riding, while spinning an artful melodrama about aging, fame, and failure

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More reviews for The Lusty Men

Flixster Audience Score: 85% Flixster User Reviews
Stella Dallas
this is one of nicholas ray's best films with a terrific performance by robert mitchum. i can't quite make out why i have never heard about this… More
jay nixon
spare tough little drama of the rodeo circuit. Fine performances