I'm thinking about what Ritt said about youthful reaction to the picture as a harbinger of what was coming down the road.
My Dad would turn 100 next week. He was a WWII vet. Hud was 34 and that would make him born 1928. Hud enlisted when he was 17 and that would be just as the war ended in '45. So they would be of the same generation. Homer looks to be in late 60s as people in their 60s often looked backed then. So Homer and my Grandpa would be contemporaries, too. Guess what I'm saying is that Lonnie would be part of the targeted generation, a [fringe] Boomer, that Ritt would have had in mind.
Paul Newman, also a WWII veteran, was born in 1925 and would have been 37-38 when HUD was filmed. Entirely too old and chock full of life experience to behave as he did, imo. I suppose Hud was supposed to be much younger than that.
"Paul Newman’s commitment to the character spilled over into off-camera moments. One such incident involved the rare opportunity for him and Patricia Neal to hang out poolside at their motel. Neal found herself opening up emotionally about her daughter Olivia, who had died suddenly just months earlier of measles encephalitis. After her long outpouring, Newman stared at her for a long moment, then simply uttered “tough” and walked away. She was taken aback by his reaction. It was early in production, and they had not yet done a major scene together, so she hadn’t really gotten to know him well or to understand his methods. Later on in the shoot, however, Neal realized Newman was already very much in character as Hud. Neal said in her autobiography that she and Newman “worked together beautifully.”
A couple Fridays ago at 2pm I'm at work and had to pause. And I'm talking major pause. 2pm on a Friday on that same date fifty-six years ago...man. All memories of a b&w world for four days. The Smithsonian Channel has been running a series of colorized and wide-screened footage of America in early 20th century decades a la Peter Jackson and WW1. It's breathtaking at times seeing the Hindenburg disaster, e.g. But it feels artificial to my innate conditioning.
Thanks for the latest Hud entry. Brings me back to reelality.
"According to Melvyn Douglas, the atmosphere was amiable and professional but not a laughter-filled set, thanks largely to the inward nature of the cast. He described Paul Newman as “shy, almost withdrawn” and said Patricia Neal was an “internal” person dealing with difficulty in her own life (including a stormy marriage to writer Roald Dahl and the recent death of her 7-year-old daughter). He described Brandon deWilde as “moody, often to the point of being sullen” and frequently distracted in a manner typical of many young people."
A "perfect storm" in terms of what is only part of what makes HUD such a great--or near great--film, because I don't think HUD is particularly well known these days, except in a "outside of a small circle of friends" kind of way. Can't picture your average (organic) garden variety millennial or Gen Z dope watching and getting something out of it.
At least the Kritzerland soundtrack release sold quickly (thanks to the Elmer name).
An interesting take on Pauline Kael's review of HUD:
"The one important critic that did not care for this movie was Pauline Kael. I usually don’t have good things to say about her, but I will acknowledge that she is more intelligent than most of the other critics. I’d admire her for being the sole dissenter on a movie like this if I was not aware that this is simply a part of her shtick. While Pauline Kael was alive, she liked to scare up as much admiration for her views as Hud would scare away friendships. She reviewed movies like H.L. Mencken reviewed books. The problem is that a book is different from a movie, and that Mencken’s observations on books were not nearly so significant as were his observations on life. Unlike Mencken, Kael had no real worldly experience. Anything overtly masculine she automatically dismissed. And for all of her swell sounding rhetoric, she never spoke of any character in a movie as having any depth. She dismisses Homer Bannon as a simpleton and Hud as a good-looking conniver. She was wrong in both cases. She was so apt to dismiss most movies for lacking any substance (and she was usually right), that she sometimes missed a story in a movie that was intelligently portrayed. Hud tells a not so simple tale of deceptively simple men."
I remember seeing this movie as a kid. It was a shock to the system. I said to myself do people act that way? Those poor cattle being shot and placed in a mass grave. So what did I do! I ordered the CD this summer. After seeing the movie. I felt I had to go to church and do a major confession. All I had to do was tell the priest I just watched the move Hud. My penance was Boys town 1 time the bells of Saint Mary 2 times and a Christmas carol any version 3 times. Being a bad boy I went home and caved to temptation.