Road House

Jean NegulescoUSA95 minutes194814AB&WEnglish

Aug 4
  • Press & Industry screenings and events are only for accredited passes.

Nightclub owner Jefty (Richard Widmark) brings more than booze back from his most recent trip to Chicago, in the sultry form of Lily (Ida Lupino), a long-legged, leather-throated songbird whose tough veneer and perpetual cloud of cigarette smoke keep the lustful Jefty at a distance. She soon warms up to Jefty's long-time friend and club manager Pete (Cornel Wilde), however, and when Jefty returns from a hunting trip to discover that they're on their way to get hitched, he throws a vengeful hitch in their plans with a deadly frame-up. Road House was the first film Lupino made after departing Warner Brothers in search of better roles, and — given that Lupino developed the script herself and sold it to Fox with her as the lead — it also laid the groundwork for her career as an independent producer. Making a fabulous femme fatale entrance — one bare leg slung over a desk, her eyes smouldering along with her cigarette as she deals herself a game of solitaire — Lupino owns the movie, with an able assist from Widmark in one of his patented psycho turns. "An unusual, and unusually fascinating, variation on the [noir] genre" (Sean Axmaker, Turner Classic Movies).

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