CineSavant Column

Tuesday April 18, 2023



Correspondent Michael McQuarrie forwarded what I thought would be a joke, but turned out to be an excellent YouTube encoding of a Highway Patrol episode from 1956, Motorcycle A with featured player Clint Eastwood.

From April of 1956, the episode references the movie The Wild One, from three years earlier. Clint and his pal (John Compton) ride their motorcycles into a town that was hit by a lawless gang several months before. Uplifting moral lessons ensue, via star Broderick Crawford. Clint plays the motorcycle rider who isn’t a hot-head . . . no “Make my day, Highway Pig!,” not by a long shot.

Only actor John Compton has reason to complain — 11 years before, he played the poor society kid fleeced by the evil Veda Pierce.



And I’ve just learned that among The Warner Archive Collection’s May title offerings (The Courtship of Eddie’s Father, Queen Christina, King Solomon’s Mines, Clash by Night, Border Incident, Hey There It’s Yogi Bear) will be Joseph Losey’s debut feature The Boy with Green Hair. The weird anti-war parable plays like an Afterschool Special version of Losey’s later These Are the Damned . . . the themes align perfectly.

The 1948 show stars Robert Ryan, Barbara Hale and a young Dean Stockwell, and was filmed in 3-Strip Technicolor. We’re excited at the idea of seeing it with one of the WAC’s fine digital remaster jobs.

Can’t resist this last observation … I understand that using Technicolor separations, with unlimited digital color control, the transfer colorists will finally be able to get that strange tint out of Dean Stockwell’s hair. It’s ruined every copy so far.

Thanks for reading! — Glenn Erickson