The Red Badge of Courage
DIRECTOR: JOHN HUSTON
CAST: AUDIE MURPHY, BILL MAULDIN, DOUGLAS DICK, ROYAL DANO
Susan Morrison of The New Yorker in attendance for a post-screening Q&A.
Lillian Ross’s Picture is one of the most indispensable literary records in existence of a film’s journey from concept to completion inside the Hollywood studio system, with all the interference and compromise that comes along the way. But the film it documents, Huston’s The Red Badge of Courage, came through it all a ragged, living thing: a tough-minded adaptation of Stephen Crane’s short novel of the Civil War starring WWII Congressional Medal of Honor winner Audie Murphy as a callow Yankee recruit who runs from the heat and hell of combat, seen with a horror that undoubtedly reflected Huston’s own still-recent wartime experiences. Arthur Hunnicutt, Andy Devine, and “Tattered Man” Royal Dano round out the cast, a rogue’s gallery of life-worn faces, each of which Huston fought his own battles to include.
Photo by Silvia Reinhardt.