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Young, Rebellious and Prematurely Dead

It was a movie that spoke to a generation of restless youth, and it cemented the larger-than-life status of its star, James Dean, who was already dead when the movie was released. Directed by Nicholas Ray, Rebel Without a Cause still resonates to this day, primarily due to Dean's performance as the brooding, conflicted Jim Stark. As Plato, Sal Mineo is the embodiment of lost, confused desperation. Natalie Wood is Stark's love-struck girlfriend. Those who have seen the film know that the Griffith Observatory makes a cameo appearance in a nail-biter of a scene when a knife-wielding Stark faces off against a group of hoodlums. The late Dennis Hopper has a small supporting role as a character named Goon. Shortly before his death, Dean gave away his pet kitten, Marcus, saying, "I figured, I might go out some night and never come home." Thanks to the magic of movies, he's never really gone away. Bing Theater, LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Blvd., L.A.; Tues., Aug. 24, 1 p.m.; $2, $1 seniors. (323) 857-6000, lacma.org.
Tue., Aug. 24, 1 p.m., 2010


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