Something Wild (1961)

Something Wild
Directed by Jack Garfein
Written by Jack Garfein and Alex Karmel from a novel by Karmel
1961/USA
Prometheus Enterprises Inc.
First viewing/Netflix rental

Mary Ann Robinson: What’s happened has happened, Mother.

I would have enjoyed this indie story of a rape victim’s struggles even more if not for the last five minutes.

Mary Ann Robinson (Carroll Baker) is coming home from college when she is dragged into some bushes and raped.  She tells no one, not even her mother (Mildred Dunnock), takes a hot bath and attempts to go on with her life.  She finds she cannot stand to be around people, including her mother, and tries to disappear by getting a job as a clerk at a five and dime and renting a cheap room.  This doesn’t work so well at damping her pain and eventually she becomes suicidal.

Mechanic Mike (Ralph Meeker) stops her from jumping off a bridge.  He talks her into going back to his apartment until she calms down.  Her troubles continue when the lonely Mike refuses to let her leave.

Carroll Baker is silent for most of this unique little film.  She does not need words to perfectly convey her misery and hate.  Ralph Meeker is not the world’s greatest actor but he does well too.  I was basically loving the film until the ending which made me pretty mad.  Worth seeing any way.

Trailer