Deep Valley | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Before getting swamped by overproduced CinemaScope features, Jean Negulesco was a skillful director of noirs and other small pictures, as evidenced by Road House (1948) and this neglected drama about a couple on the run (1947). Ida Lupino plays a poor, eccentric 22-year-old in rural California, traumatized by abusive and dysfunctional parents (Henry Hull and Faye Bainter), who falls for a sensitive but volatile escaped convict (Dane Clark). If you can get past the obtrusive Max Steiner score and a surfeit of dog reaction shots, this has a feeling for outcasts and strong, quirky performances that build to the kind of affecting and socially subversive romantic melodrama Nicholas Ray excelled at. With Wayne Morris. 104 min. 16mm. Also on the program: Cell Bound (1955), one of Tex Avery's creepier and more manic cartoons. a Sat 8/11, 8 PM, LaSalle Bank Cinema. --Jonathan Rosenbaum

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