Genre Guesstimation – The Defiant Ones (1958)

The idea behind this feature (Genre Guesstimation) is for me to watch a bunch of new movies (or ones that I haven’t seen many times) from the chosen monthly GG genre in order to expand my knowledge of movies within that particular genre.

This month’s Genre was chosen by Steven of Past, Present, Future in TV and Film and he chose Black and White movies as the Genre for August.  If you want to still submit a movie, the deadline was 25 August. (I know the deadline has past, let me know if you want to join in tho) Just send it to me at b&

Let’s see if I felt that this movie would be worthy of being in the company of my others favorite movies in the genre of B&W movies…

Defiant_Ones“I ain’t gettin’ mad, Joker. I been mad all my natural life.” – Noah Cullen

Number of Times Seen – 1 (23 Aug 2015)

Brief Synopsis – Two prisoners who escape from a chain-gang must learn to trust each other to survive despite one being black and one being white.

My Take on it – This is a movie that I never got around to watch until now despite knowing the basic idea and finding it interesting to see what they would do with it.

For its time, it truly was a groundbreaking idea having a black man and white man chained together and needing to trust one another to survive despite their own hatred for each other.

Watching it in 2015, I just felt that it lost much of its impact for me and too many scenes felt too strained between the actors and things felt over the top.

In the 1990’s the TV show Quantum Leap (one of my favorite shows ever) had a similar themed episode that worked much better for me than this did.

Both actors Tony Curtis and Sidney Poitier worked well off one another in general, but overall the movie wasn’t as powerful as I had hoped it would be.

Bottom Line – Groundbreaking movie for its time that just didn’t resonate enough for me now.  Curtis and Poitier were great working off one another but too much seemed strained in their acting.  I liked the Quantum Leap episode that used this idea much better and was more effective for me. Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – A technical adviser on board during filming had to go uncredited, because he was a real-life chain gang escapee who was still a wanted man. (From IMDB)

Genre Grandeur Worthy? – Wasn’t as good as I had hoped it would be eventhough I know that in the time it came out it was truly groundbreaking.

Rating – Globe Worthy


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9 thoughts on “Genre Guesstimation – The Defiant Ones (1958)

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