Rebel without a cause
BIG Home Video/Warner, Rs 599 (2-DVD set)
Decades before Amitabh Bachchan’s Vijay perfected the gritting teeth and sweaty look of the ‘angry young man’, there was James Dean’s impetuous James Stark. They could be seen as pretty much the same — a brooding hero harbouring an edgy hatred towards the status quo. Just that Dean managed to convey it all without a sweat. The Stark which Dean portrayed in the second last role of his short career is a spoilt brat who, despite having all the money and the looks, is restless.
The film is the best-known work by Nicholas Ray, the director who influenced filmmakers such as François Truffaut, Jean-Luc Godard and Wim Wenders in Europe, and Martin Scorsese and Philip Kaufman in the US. While Truffaut and Godard wrote eloquently about Ray’s treatment of the noir genre, the others were moved by his bold use of colour and dialogue.
This second DVD explains why Dean was such an attractive comet in a galaxy of stars. And maybe why the self-conscious Big Studios imploded.