The Lawless (1950)
The Lawless was director Joseph Losey's second feature-length film. The story concerns a group of Mexican-American migrant workers who are subjected to all sorts of abuse and intolerance by their California bosses. A violent clash between whites and Latinos at a dance results in a torrent of bigotry. Seemingly the only Californian willing to champion the workers' cause is crusading newspaperman Larry Wilder, and soon he too is the victim of senseless mob violence. The story boils to a manhunt for a fugitive fruit-picker who has been accused of fomenting the aforementioned riot. Director Losey, producers William Pine and William Thomas and screenwriter Geoffrey Homes (aka Daniel Mainwaring) are to be commended for tackling a controversial issue in an honest, no-nonsense fashion; even so, the film ends in standard Hollywood-liberal fashion with a white man coming to the rescue. … More
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Critic Reviews for The Lawless
Audience Reviews for The Lawless
Tightly paced social problem programmer is well directed by Losey. Carey was never the strongest of leading men and perhaps the film would have been better served by an actor with more gravitas in the lead but he turns in an acceptable performance. Gail Russell is fine in the limited screen time she has but her role isn't really noteworthy. The person who is underutilized is Lee Patrick as an out of town reporter, whenever she's on screen the other actors recede into the background so sharp is her presence, the mark of a truly outstanding supporting performer. The story is sadly relevant however even today, how people can be swayed by mob rule and unreasoning prejudice.More
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