The Unforgiven (1960)

JOHN HUSTON

Bil’s rating (out of 5):   BBBB.  USA, 1960Hill-Hecht-Lancaster Productions.  Screenplay by , based on the novel by .  Cinematography by .  Produced by .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  

Burt Lancaster and Audrey Hepburn in The Unforgiven.

Not to be confused with Clint Eastwood’s Academy Award-winning western, this film is something of a flipside to John Ford’s classic The Searchers. A family living on the frontier of Wild West America becomes the object of derision when their fellow settlers learn that their adopted daughter () was a native baby taken after a battle that killed her parents.  The news brings out the worst possible racist tendencies in the people around her, including members of her own family. The real conflict comes, however, when her tribe comes to claim her and she must choose between two families. Hepburn is terrific in the lead, while stands out as the wise grandmother in this independently-produced film with a strong social message. Hepburn suffered a broken back after a horse threw her off during filming.

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4 thoughts on “The Unforgiven (1960)

  1. And Huston never forgave himself for AH’s accident, apparently regretted the whole film…which in modern standards is suuuuper racist…not as bad as Mr Yuniohsi on “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”, but close!

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