All the King's Men

All the King's Men

Robert Rossen (1949)

105min
A Certificate
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Review

Our Score
A blistering and still powerful political drama that deservedly won the best picture Oscar, with the best actor award going to gruff Broderick Crawford in the performance of a lifetime as Willie Stark, a thinly disguised portrait of Louisiana demagogue "Kingfish" Huey Long. Mercedes McCambridge is also superb as a political aide, gaining another well-deserved Oscar as best supporting actress. Today this movie may seem a tad hysterical and over-performed, but it's important to view it in the context of the time in which it was made - a time of extreme corruption and bigotry. Editor (and later director) Robert Parrish was responsible for restructuring director Robert Rossen's cut, based on Robert Penn Warren's unfilmable book. Parrish added new scenes and dialogue, making the film worthy of its Oscar nod and at the same time winning the undying respect of Columbia boss Harry Cohn. Crawford parodied Cohn mercilessly in his next hit, Born Yesterday.

Summary

A small-town senator rises to power railing against the corruption of the political establishment, only to become just as dishonest himself. Political drama, starring Broderick Crawford, Joanne Dru, John Ireland and Mercedes McCambridge.

Cast & Crew

Willie Stark Broderick Crawford
Anne Stanton Joanne Dru
Jack Burden John Ireland
Tom Stark John Derek
Sadie Burke Mercedes McCambridge
Adam Stanton Shepperd Strudwick
Tiny Duffy Ralph Dumke
Lucy Stark Anne Seymour
Mrs Burden Katherine Warren
Judge Stanton Raymond Greenleaf
Director Robert Rossen
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Other Information

Language: EnglishBlack and whiteTheatrical distributor: Columbia Picture Corp. LtdAvailable on: video and DVD
Drama