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The Lusty Men

Year: 1952
Studio: RKO
Director: Nicholas Ray
Susan Hayward ... Louise Merritt
Robert Mitchum ... Jeff McCloud
Arthur Kennedy ... Wes Merritt
Arthur Hunnicutt ... Booker Davis
Frank Faylen ... Al Dawson

Plot synopsis: Retired rodeo champ Jeff McCloud meets up with farmhand Wes and his wife Louise and starts teaching Wes the rodeo game. Flush with his success, Wes sets his sights on becoming a rodeo star, while unaware that Jeff is falling for his neglected wife.

Verdict: Another great Mitchum performance as busted-up rodeo rider Jeff McCloud. He's weary, knowing, and brilliantly low-key. Susan Hayward is equally good as the fiery but loyal wife to knucklehead Arthur Kennedy.

What the Critics Said: "To say that The Lusty Men is the best rodeo film ever does it little justice." — Magill's Survey of Cinema
"Robert Mitchum gives what many will term his best performance yet." — Variety
"Mr. Mitchum is most authentic as a hard-bitten rodeo 'tramp' who has gone on the shelf because of his injuries." — The New York Times

Behind the Scenes: Mitchum riled his co-star Susan Hayward by chewing garlic before one kissing scene. She didn't take it too hard: she would reteam with him a year later on the jungle adventure pic White Witch Doctor.

If You Liked This Movie, You Might Also Like: Blood on the Moon, The Cowboy and the Lady with Gary Cooper