A Brief Introduction
Years in Review
Films Ranked: 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005
Current Criticism
Search Criticism
Past Criticism
Top 10 Lists
Notable Short Films
Contact Me

Naked and the Dead, The

Director:  Raoul Walsh
Year Released:  1958
Rating:  0.5

Words cannot adequately describe how much of a bastardization this is of a classic novel by Norman Mailer about World War II - the treatment here is uneven, dull and amounts to little (the last hour's attempt at meaning is presented by Cliff Robertson in a fairly lame final speech). The book is quite long, and to compensate the screenwriters had to cut out relevant material and produce a Cliff's Notes version, making the picture uneven (the first hour and last hour are about different things) and turning three-dimensional characters (who Mailer based on the men he fought with) into caricatures (the captain, in particular, is a silly brute - to get you to adequately hate him, he shoots friendly Japanese soldiers who carry around pictures of their family and squashes wounded birds in his hand). If this mess didn't embarrass Mailer ... it should have.

Return to the Previous Page

© Copyright 2018 Matthew Lotti.