In celebration of Kirk Douglas’s centennial birthday, MFAH Films screens one of his favorite movies in which he starred. With a cast including George Kennedy, Walter Matthau, Carroll O’Connor, and Gena Rowlands, the classic black-and-white Western Lonely Are the Brave features Douglas as a ferociously autonomous cowboy who plans to break a friend out of jail by getting himself incarcerated in the same facility. The screenplay by writer Dalton Trumbo addresses the virtues of freedom and individuality—a pertinent theme because Trumbo was blacklisted during the notorious House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) hearings. Lonely Are the Brave had its world premiere in Houston.

• Film curator Marian Luntz blogs about Kirk Douglas’s 100th birthday and the film’s Houston connections.

• “Hot Pursuit: Lonely Are the Brave” —Film Comment magazine

• “Kirk Douglas: Happy 100th Birthday, Pardner!” —Cowboys & Indians magazine

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David Miller
Running Time
107 minutes
35mm, B/W