The Mark (1961)


“Ego, sex, opportunity. Mix all that and you have the poet’s dream; love.” – Dr. McNally

Number of Times Seen – 1 (27 May 2018)

Brief Synopsis – A felon recently released from prison tries to start life anew but is unable to completely avoid his past.

My Take on it – This is another film that I never heard of before seeing that Stuart Whitman was nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor for this role.

The premise is quite provocative for its time but is quite tame for what we get nowadays.

They do a nice job looking at the way a man emerging from prison  after being “rehabilitated must try and move forward yet still be hounded by his past no matter what he does or where he ends up going.

Whitman does a nice job with the character because they are scenes were we feel sympathetic for his ordeal.

The story itself is good but constantly feels as if something is missing the entire time that would make it even more powerful.

Some of the scenes with Rod Steiger as a psychiatrist trying to help him come across quite comical instead of poignant which takes away from the whole issue especially since it looks and feels like they used strange methods back then to treat such issues.

This film definitely gets the “creep” factor of the subject matter perfect because it is not at all easy to watch some of the scenes as they are presented.

Bottom Line – Nice look at how a man released from prison after being “rehabilitated” must still deal with his past chasing him no matter what he does or where he goes. Whitman does a very convincing job in the lead, but the story, (which seemed quite controversial when it came out) lacks something that would make it more powerful.  Some of the scenes with Steiger as a psychiatrist trying to help Whitman are somewhat funny since the way people treat these kinds of issues now are much different from how they were treated then.  They do manage to get the “creep” factor just right for this kind of subject matter.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – The lead role was originally intended for Richard Burton, who had to drop out because of a stage commitment. (From IMDB)

Rating – BAFTA Worthy (6/10)

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One thought on “The Mark (1961)

  1. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 1961 |

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