Independent Films, Film Profiles
Cash McCall is a 1960 movie starring James Garner and Natalie Wood, based upon the novel of the same name by Cameron Hawley about a man who buys businesses in order to sell them at a profit. Recognized by critics as decades ahead of its time in numerous ways, especially its hardcore depiction of business dealings, the innovative film was directed by Joseph Pevney from a screenplay by Lenore J. Coffee and Marion Hargrove.Grant Austen (Dean Jagger), the head of Austen Plastics, yearns for retirement. So when Scofield Industries, by far his largest customer, threatens to take its business elsewhere, Austen considers selling his company. He hires a consulting firm, which finds an interested potential buyer, the notorious Cash McCall (James Garner).Cash meets with Austen and his daughter Lory (Natalie Wood), who owns part of the company. Austen conceals the problem with Scofield Industries and sells out to Cash. Afterwards, Cash speaks to Lory privately; they had met the previous summer at a party and become instantly attracted to each other. However, when Lory showed up at his cabin later that night, Cash was not ready for a serious relationship and turned her down. Mortified by the rejection, she fled. Upon further thought, Cash realized he had made a mistake. Not really interested in the company, he buys it so that he can talk to her.Before the deal is finalized, Cash's assistant Gil Clark (Henry Jones) discovers that Austen Plastics holds patents essential to Scofield Industries. Its alarmed boss, General Danvers (Roland Winters), tries to buy Austen Plastics himself. Cash then decides that he could run Scofield more profitably and starts buying up controlling interest in the second company.In the middle of all the dealmaking, Cash proposes marriage to Lory, and she accepts. However, the assistant manager of the hotel where Cash lives, Maude Kennard (Nina Foch), wants Cash herself, and tricks Lory into believing that she is Cash's girlfriend. Meanwhile, one of Danvers' associates convinces Austen that Cash is offering much less than the company is worth. Eventually, everything is cleared up, and Cash and Lory reconcile.
Year of Production: 1960
Length: 102 minutes
Country: United States
- Joseph Pevney
- Henry Blanke
- James Garner, Natalie Wood, Dean Jagger