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Pick of the WeekBad Day at Black Rock [Warner Archive]
What is it? A one-armed man arrives via train in a remote western town, and the populace reacts with suspicion and violence.
Why buy it? Spencer Tracy excels as the polite but mysterious stranger whose presence sets everyone on edge, and the more he probes the harder they push. The film explores threads of America’s deep-seated racism and small-town insulation, and it pairs that commentary with a steadily increasing suspense. The themes and actions here are still sadly relevant, even now, and it makes for an important watch that still manages to entertain. Tracy’s potential adversaries include Lee Marvin, Ernest Borgnine, Walter Brennan, and