Bad Day at Black Rock

Movie Details

DirectorJohn Sturges
Key CastSpencer Tracy, Robert Ryan, Anne Francis, Lee Marvin, Ernest Borgnine
MPAA RatingApproved
Film TypeColor
Genre(s)Western, Drama, Thriller
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Spencer Tracy stars in “Bad Day at Black Rock.”

“Bad Day at Black Rock” is a suspenseful western starring Spencer Tracy. It is considered one of the best western films ever made because of its tense storyline and outstanding acting by the cast, especially Spencer Tracy.
The movie begins with the Santa Fe train arriving at the seemingly desolate, Southwestern town named Blackrock. The only person to get off the train is a one-armed man. The man’s name is John Macreedy (Spencer Tracy) and he seems determined to find a Japanese-American farmer who lives in the area. Why? How are they connected?
No one in the town knows Macreedy, and they don’t like him asking a lot of questions. When he asks where to find the Japanese-American farmer living in the area, he seems to strike a nerve.
Macreedy then senses that his every move is being watched and that he may now personally be in danger.
The great cast includes Ernest Borgnine as a dastardly bully, Lee Marvin as a loud-mouth brute and John Ericson as a cowardly hotel worker.
Spencer Tracy was nominated for an Academy Award for his acting in this film. This movie was also nominated for Best Directing and Best Screenplay Academy Awards.

• The studio really wanted Spencer Tracy to star in “Bad Day at Black Rock” but knew that he wouldn’t be enthusiastic about taking the role unless there was something unique about the film. They decided that they needed an angle for the Macreedy character and thought of a great one when they decided to make Macreedy a one-armed man. This worked and Spencer Tracy did an outstanding job as Macreedy in the film. For his stellar performance, Spencer Tracy and was nominated for a Best Actor Academy Award.
• Like many western films, “Bad Day at Black Rock” was inspired by a written story. This particular film is based on the short story, “Bad Time at Honda” by Howard Breslin that appeared in American Magazine in January, 1947.
• Portions of “Bad Day at Black Rock” were filmed on location in Lone Pine, California.
• The director of this movie, John Sturges, also directed these other famous westerns: “Gunfight at the O.K. Corral”, “Last Train from Gun Hill“, “The Magnificent Seven” and “The Hallelujah Trail.”
• “Bad Day at Black Rock” was nominated for three major Academy Awards: Best Actor – Spencer Tracy, Best Director – John Sturges and Best Screenplay – Millard Kaufman. This was the year (1956) that the romance drama “Marty” swept the Oscars by winning Best Picture Academy Award and also the Academy Awards for Best Actor, Director and Screenplay against “Bad Day at Black Rock.”


Bad Day at Black Rock Movie DVD

Spencer Tracy stars is a one-arm stranger who arrives in the town of Black Rock looking for a Japanese American. This riles some of the locals who mysteriously don’t want the stranger poking around the town.

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