Hud (1963)

Directed by Martin Ritt

Starring Paul Newman, Melvyn Douglas, Patricia Neal, and Brandon Wilde

I am a big fan of Paul Newman, I consider him among the greatest actors of all time. I have wanted to see this film for a long time because I read reviews about his performance. When I saw it available on Prime I finally got my chance.

The story is about Hud, an arrogant and self-centered man who lives and works with his father. Father and son don’t get along and when the cattle get sick they are forced to close the ranch until the cattle are cleared. The real story is the family situation as father and son fight, Hud’s nephew is in the middle of his grandfather and uncle’s feud.

I thought the film was good. Hud as a character is a real anti-hero. He is the main character but he is not likable at all. I liked the story, family matters are never simple and this film explores a broken relationship between father and son, and in between, there is Lonnie who admires both men but is forced to choose which one will he admire more as he takes his path. The movie does not explain much the reasons or offer a resolution but seeing the development and the conclusion was interesting to me.

Paul Newman was great in the performance although it was a similar role to the one he brilliantly played on Cat on a hot tin roof. Hud was different in that he was an arrogant character who cared not to change while in Cat he was just angry at himself and for that he was mean until he changed. Hud does not change, is a mean character until the end, and Newman plays it to perfection. The main cast was all good and complemented Newman well.

Films from this era have a certain charm to them that I enjoy seeing them. This one was a very good drama movie that focused on the characters.

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