Lonely are the Brave 1962

Lonely Are the Brave

Critics Consensus

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93%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 14

85%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 1,132

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Lonely Are the Brave Photos

Movie Info

Ranch hand Jack Burns (Kirk Douglas) feels out of place in the modern world. Jack deliberately gets into a bar room fight to be imprisoned alongside friend Paul (Michael Kane), arrested for helping illegal aliens. Jack tries to convince Paul to flee with him, but, as a family man, Paul has too much at stake. Jack escapes after a beating from a sadistic police deputy (George Kennedy) and heads for the hills. An extensive manhunt breaks out, led by sympathetic Sheriff Johnson (Walter Matthau).

Cast & Crew

Kirk Douglas
Jack Burns, John W. Burns
Gena Rowlands
Jerry Bondi
Walter Matthau
Sheriff Morey Johnson
Michael Kane
Paul Bondi
Carroll O'Connor
Hinton (truck driver)
William Schallert
Harry (soft-spoken radio operator)
George Kennedy
Deputy Sheriff Gutierrez
Karl Swenson
Rev. Hoskins (prison inmate)
William Mims
First deputy arraigning Burns
Martin Garralaga
Old man (observer in Latin bar)
David Miller
Director
Jerry Goldsmith
Original Music
Philip H. Lathrop
Cinematographer
Leon Barsha
Film Editor
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Critic Reviews for Lonely are the Brave

All Critics (14) | Top Critics (1) | Fresh (13) | Rotten (1)

  • Quote not available.

    April 17, 2001 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

    George Perry

    BBC.com
    Top Critic
  • It's worth noting that Kirk Douglas long professed that Lonely Are the Brave contains one of his own favorite performances.

    May 23, 2020 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…
  • Such a shocking beginning is the first of many attributes that place this film as the best - and most atypical - western in which Jerry Goldsmith was involved throughout his professional career. [Full Review in Spanish]

    September 11, 2019 | Full Review…
  • Afterwards, [Kirk Douglas] made no mystery of his love of the film, later declaring it his all-time favorite of his work. And why not?

    December 28, 2018 | Rating: 8/10 | Full Review…
  • Lonely are the Brave, a film fairly stuffed with symbolism, shows how inevitably the heroic, human, in its real sense unsophisticated world of the West and its values are crushed by the synthetic, the mechanical, the wasteful and vicious in modern life.

    July 13, 2018 | Full Review…
  • David Miller builds sturdily on Philip Lathrop's widescreen cinematography, but Douglas and Dalton Trumbo's screenplay are the auteurs here

    November 1, 2009 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Lonely are the Brave

  • Apr 17, 2010
    Observant drama of a maverick cowboy whose way of life has almost entirely disappeared. What he perceives as a good deed for a friend turns out to ultimately be a life and death struggle for him. Excellent work by a cast of familiar faces with Walter Matthau very good as a world weary sheriff and especially outstanding Kirk Douglas, in his own favorite of his performances. The ending is heart rending.
    jay n Super Reviewer
  • Jul 21, 2009
    Lonely are the Brave is an underrated classic that never seemed to get is due. A mostly great story (I did nod off a couple times but to the film's credit, it was past 4AM), some great acting (this movie--along with Ace in the Hole--is a monument to my underappreciation of Kirk Douglas), some fine direction and some d a m n fine cinematography make for a memorable moviegoing experience. This is a sort of upbeat movie for a movie about such a doomed character and Douglas plays John (Jack for short) Burns with an almost naive optimism in a way that's hopeful but almost jarring at the same time. The supporting performances (particularly Walter Matthau) were great, but despite Lonely are the Brave (original title of The Last Cowboy is much more appropriate) being made at the right time in history, it was made kind of too early in cinematic history for its own good. File between Easy Rider precursors and High Sierra with a dash of Hud.
    Michael G Super Reviewer
  • Dec 28, 2008
    I'm beginning to wonder if Kirk Douglas ever gave a bad performance. If you only know him from <i>Spartacus</i> then you don't know what you're missing. His lesser known films, like <i>Ace in the Hole</i>, <i>Champion</i>, <i>The Bad and the Beautiful</i>, <i>Paths of Glory</i>, and <i>Lonely are the Brave</i> are a testament to his talent and his enormous contributions to the art of movie making.
    Randy T Super Reviewer
  • Dec 18, 2008
    Great Kirk Douglas performance,one of his best. He is a old school cowboy dealing with modern times. The Frontier has been taken over by fences, cars, and laws and Kirk was born in the wrong century. He is a good man with outdated ideals that are crushing him. Walter Matthau is fantastic as a cop who chases Kirk, but pity's him. Tragic story with great performances(including Kirk's horse Whiskey) and memorable ending. A must see.
    cody f Super Reviewer

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