The Good Die Young
|The Good Die Young|
US 1955 cinema poster
|Directed by||Lewis Gilbert|
|Produced by||John Woolf|
|Screenplay by||Vernon Harris
|Based on||The Good Die Young
by Richard Macauley
|Music by||Georges Auric|
|Edited by||Ralph Kemplen|
|Distributed by||IFD (UK)
United Artists (US)
|Running time||94 min.|
The Good Die Young (1954) is a crime thriller film made in the United Kingdom by Remus Films, featuring a number of American characters. It was directed by Lewis Gilbert. The screenplay was based on the book of the same name written by Richard Macaulay.
The film opens with four men in a car, apparently about to commit a serious crime. How each of the previously law-abiding men came to be in this position is then explored.
Mike (Stanley Baker) is an ageing boxer, in love with his wife (Rene Ray) but injured and unable to find a job. Joe (Richard Basehart) is an out-of-work clerk who needs to fly to the United States with his young wife (Joan Collins) to escape her clinging and unstable mother (Freda Jackson). Eddie (John Ireland) is an AWOL American airman with an unfaithful actress wife (Gloria Grahame). The last man, 'Rave' Ravenscourt (Laurence Harvey), is a 'gentleman' sponger and a scoundrel with gambling debts and the unscrupulous leader who lures the other three. The film reaches a bloody climax at Heathrow Airport.
- Laurence Harvey as Miles 'Rave' Ravenscourt
- Gloria Grahame as Denise Blaine
- Richard Basehart as Joe Halsey
- Joan Collins as Mary Halsey
- John Ireland as Eddie Blaine
- Rene Ray as Angela Morgan
- Stanley Baker as Mike Morgan
- Margaret Leighton as Eve Ravenscourt
- Robert Morley as Sir Francis Ravenscourt
- Freda Jackson as Mrs Freeman
- James Kenney as Dave, Angela's brother
- Susan Shaw as Doris, girl in the pub
- Lee Patterson as Tod Maslin
- Sandra Dorne as pretty girl
- Leslie Dwyer as Stookey
- Patricia McCarron as Carole
- George Rose as Bunny
- Joan Heal as Woman
- Walter Hudd as Dr Reed
The film was shot on location in London and at Shepperton Studios, with other scenes of BOAC Boeing Stratocruiser aircraft at Heathrow Airport. Laurence Harvey subsequently married Margaret Leighton, who played his wife in the film.
The film's screenwriters changed the setting of Richard Macauley's original novel from America to 1950s England. The British bank financing the film also required that the novel's bank robbery be switched to a post office in the film version.
The film opened in the UK on 2 March 1954, with general release following on 5 April.
- Lewis Gilbert Interview Cinema Retro Vol. 7 Issue 19
- F Maurice Speed, Film Review 1954-55 Macdonald & Co 1954
- The Good Die Young in the British Film Institute's "Explore film..." database
- The Good Die Young at the British Film Institute's Screenonline
- The Good Die Young at the Internet Movie Database