Movie: Rebel Without a Cause


Several things surprised me about this movie. Ann and I both wanted to see a James Dean movie, because he is still so glamorized by our culture. We had an idea of him being aloof and cool, which doesn’t describe his character in this movie at all. Here he’s sincere, well-meaning, loving, and sensitive in addition to angst-ridden and rebelious. The movie tackles some of the stickier aspects of parent-teen relations too. Dad is dominated by Mom and Grandma, or inapropriately attracted to his daughter. It’s real stuff.

We noticed something about the soundtrack too. It was the same orchestral style as ’40’s noir movies like Lady From Shanghai, but the overbearing aspect was gone. Also, the soundtrack fit the scenes better. It may have been a step towards the “feel like this now” soundtracks that come out of Hollywood now, but I’d say that’s certainly an improvement over those bombastic predecessors.

5 responses to “Movie: Rebel Without a Cause”

  1. still not how that stuff that james did on screen passed for acting.

    some people get jobs in Hollywood ‘cuz of their looks. imho, he was one of these people.

    you may wanna check out “Giant” as well. ’bout the only believable part of his character is the drunk portion.

  2. I thought he was believable in his character here. But it may not have been much of a stretch for him either, just like Keanu Reeves was good in Bill & Ted’s.

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