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Sika’s 100 Greatest Movies of All Time! 97. Cool Hand Luke (1967)

June 13, 2011

97. Cool Hand Luke [DVD] (1967)

Plot: Jackson (Paul Newman) get a two year southern chain gang sentence after he’s arrested for drunkenly decapitating parking meters.

While the ambition of prison captain (Strother Martin) is for each prisoner to “get their mind right,” it becomes obvious that Luke is not about to bow down to anyone. Not even to chain gang leader Dragline (George Kennedy).

Also Starring: Jo Van Fleet, Dennis Hopper, Harry Dean Stanton, J.D. Cannon.
Directed by: Stuart Rosenberg
Written By: Donn Pearce, Frank Pierson
Length: 126 min.

The Man… and the Motion Picture that simply do not conform.
(Cool Hand Luke poster tagline)

Review: There are rebel heroes and then there’s rebel heroes. Paul Newman as Cool Hand Luke is my favorite kind. He refuses to conform to the rules and regulations of society both inside and outside the prison walls (or fence in this case).

AND he keeps it cool even though he has to endure a severe George Kennedy beating, prison breaks, being put in the box or when trying the eat 50 eggs in one hour challenge.

Oscar Count:
1 win: Best Actor in a Supporting Role (George Kennedy)
3 nominations: Best Actor in a Leading Role (Paul Newman), Best Music, Original Music Score (Lalo Schifrin) and Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium (Donn Pearce, Frank Pierson).

So why should I see this old movie instead of — let’s say — Nicolas Cage escaping Hell (the ultimate prison) in Drive Angry 3D (2011) you ask? Well, then I have to say that’s a bad example you bring up, because I found Drive Angry quite enjoyable, but anyway.. okay, basically my answer is this: Cool Hand Luke had me hooked from the first to the last frame. The acting is impeccable and the cinematography and score is awesome. And if that doesn’t make you wanna see it, then:

What we’ve got here is failure to communicate. (Famous Quote from Cool Hand Luke)

Previous on the list: 98. The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)

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