The Carpetbaggers

Screening on Film
Directed by Edward Dmytryk.
With George Peppard, Carroll Baker, Alan Ladd.
US, 1964, 35mm, color, 150 min.

The life of Howard Hughes gets a sordid roman à clef treatment thanks to the lusty pen of Harold Robbins, whose novel was adapted for the film. After the death of his father, young Jonas Cord assumes the reins of his family’s dynamite business. He eventually turns to the aviation and motion picture industries to further build on his inherited wealth. Along the way he romances and betrays a series of beauties including Carroll Baker, playing the elder Cord’s widow, who becomes a starlet at Jonas’s production company. Despite its salacious tagline (“This is adult entertainment!”), the film was relatively tame even for its time but went on to become a great commercial success thanks to the public’s insatiable appetite for celebrity gossip.

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