Lee Marvin


Lamont Waltman Marvin Jr. (February 19, 1924 – August 29, 1987), better known as Lee Marvin, was an American film and television actor. Known for his distinctive voice and premature white hair, Marvin initially appeared in supporting roles, mostly villains, soldiers, and other hardboiled characters. A prominent television role was that of Detective Lieutenant Frank Ballinger in the NBC crime series M Squad (1957–1960). Marvin is best remembered for his lead roles as “tough guy” characters such as Liberty Valance in John Ford‘s The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962), with James Stewart and John Wayne; Charlie Strom in Don Siegel‘s The Killers (1964), with John Cassavetes, Angie Dickinson, Clu Gulager; and Ronald Reagan; Rico Fardan in Richard Brook’s The Professionals (1966), Major John Reisman in Robert Aldirch‘s The Dirty Dozen (1967), with Ernest Borgnine, Charles Bronson, Jim Brown, Cassavetes, George Kennedy, Robert Ryan, Telly Savalas, Robert Webber and Donald Sutherland; Walker in John Boorman‘s Point Blank (1967), American Pilot in Boorman’s Hell in the Pacific (1968), with Toshiro Mifune; and the Sergeant in Samuel Fuller’s The Big Red One (1980).

One of Marvin’s most notable film projects was Cat Ballou (1965), with Jane Fonda, Tom Nardini, Michael Callan, Dwayne Hickman, Nat King Cole and Stubby Kaye; a comedy Western in which he played dual roles. For portraying both gunfighter Kid Shelleen and criminal Tim Strawn, he won the Academy Award for Best Actor, along with a BAFTA Award, a Golden Globe Award, an NBR Award, and the Silver Bear for Best Actor.

Other notable films in the 50s included The Strange Wore a Gun (1953), with Randolph Scott and Claire Trevor; The Wild One (1953), with Marlon Brando; Gorilla at Large (1954), with Cameron Mitchell, Anne Bancroft, Lee J. Cobb and Raymond Burr; The Caine Mutiny (1954), with Humphrey Bogart, José Ferrer, Van Johnson, Fred MacMurray, and Robert Francis; John Sturges‘s Bad Day at Black Rock (1955), with Spencer Tracy and Robert Ryan; Stanley Kramer‘s Not as a Stranger (1955), with Olivia de Havilland, Robert Mitchum, and Frank Sinatra; George Marshall‘s Pillar’s of the Sky (1956), with Jeff Chandler and Dorothy Malone; I Died a Thousand Times (1955), with Jack Palance, Shelley Winters, Earl Holliman, Perry Lopez, Pedro Gonzalez Gonzalez, and Lon Chaney Jr.; The Rack (1956), with Paul Newman, Wendell Corey, and Walter Pidgeon; and Raintree Country (1957), with Montgomery Clift, Elizabeth Taylor, and Eva Marie Saint.

Other notable films in the 60s and 70s include Michael Curtiz‘s The Comancheros (1961), with Wayne, Stuart Whitman, Ina Balin, Nehemiah Persoff, Bruce Cabot, Jack Elam, Patrick Wayne, and Edgar Buchanan; Prime Cut (1972), with Gene Hackman and Sissy Spacek; The Iceman Cometh (1973), with Jeff Bridges; The Spikes Gang (1974), with Gary Grimes, Charles Martin Smith and Ron Howard; Terence Young’s The Klansman (1974), with Richard Burton, O.J. Simpson, Lola Falana, and Linda Evans; Shout at the Devil (1976), with Roger Moore; The Great Scout & Cathouse Thursday (1976), with Oliver Reed, Sylvia Miles, and Kay Lenz; and Avalanche Express (1979), with Robert Shaw, Maximilian Schell, and Evans.

Films in the 1980s include Samuel Fuller’s The Big Red One (1980), with Mark Hamill, Robert Carradine, Siegfried Rauch, Bobby Di Cicco, and Kelly Ward; Death Hunt (1981), with Charles Bronson, Angie Dickinson, Carl Weathers, Maury Chaykin, Ed Lauter and Andrew Stevens; Gorky Park (1983), with William Hurt, Brian Dennehy, Ian Bannen, and Joanna Pacula; Dog Day (1984), with Miou-Miou, Jean Carmet, Victor Lanoux, David Bennent, Bernadette Lafont, Tina Louise, and Jean-Claude Dreyfus; and The Delta Force (1986), with Chuck Norris, Martin Balsam, Joey Bishop, Robert Vaughn, Steve James, Robert Forster, Shelley Winters, Kennedy, and an uncredited Liam Neeson in an early role.

Each review will be linked to the title below.

(*seen originally in theaters)

(**seen rereleased in theaters)


  • You’re in the Navy Now (1951) – directed by Henry Hathaway – uncredited
  • Teresa (1951) – directed by Fred Zinnermann – uncredited
  • Diplomatic Courier (1952) – directed by Henry Hathaway – uncredited
  • We’re Not Married! (1952) – directed by Edmund Goulding – uncredited
  • The Duel at Silver Creek (1952) – directed by Don Siegel
  • Hangman’s Knot (1952) – directed by Roy Huggins
  • Eight Iron Men (1952) – directed by Edward Dmytryk
  • Down Among the Sheltering Palms (1953) – directed by Edmund Goulding – uncredited
  • Seminole (1953) – directed by Budd Boetticher
  • The Glory Brigade (1953) – directed by Robert D. Webb
  • The Stranger Wore a Gun (1953) – directed by Andre DeToth
  • The Big Heat (1953) – directed by Fritz Lang
  • Gun Fury (1953) – directed by Raoul Walsh
  • The Wild One (1953) – directed by László Benedek
  • Gorilla at Large (1954) – directed by Harmon Jones
  • The Caine Mutiny (1954) – directed by Edward Dmytryk
  • The Raid (1954) – directed by Hugo Fregonese
  • Bad Day at Black Rock (1955) – directed by John Sturges
  • Violent Saturday Dill (1955) – directed by Richard Fleischer
  • Not as a Stranger (1955) – directed by Stanley Kramer
  • A Life in the Balance (1955) – directed by Harry Horner & Rafael Portillo
  • Pete Kelly’s Blues (1955) – directed by Jack Webb
  • I Died a Thousand Times (1955) – directed by Stuart Heisler
  • Shack Out on 101 (1955) – directed by Edward Dein
  • Seven Men from Now (1956) – directed by Budd Boetticher
  • Attack! (1956) – directed by Robert Aldrich
  • Pillars of the Sky (1956) – directed by George Marshall
  • The Rack (1956) – directed by Arnold Laven
  • Raintree County (1957) – directed by Edward Dmytryk
  • The Missouri Traveler (1958) – directed by Jerry Hopper
  • The Comancheros (1961) – directed by Michael Curtiz
  • The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962) – directed by John Ford
  • Donovan’s Reef (1963) – directed by John Ford
  • The Killers (1964) – directed by Don Siegel
  • Cat Ballou (1965) – directed by Elliot Silverstein
  • Ship of Fools (1965) – directed by Stanley Kramer
  • The Professionals (1966) – directed by Richard Brooks
  • The Dirty Dozen (1967) – directed by Robert Aldrich
  • Point Blank (1967) – directed by John Boorman
  • Sergeant Ryker (1968) – directed by Buzz Kulik
  • Hell in the Pacific (1968) – directed by John Boorman
  • Paint Your Wagon (1969) – directed by Joshua Logan
  • Monte Walsh (1970) – directed by William A. Fraker
  • Pocket Money (1972) – directed by Stuart Rosenberg
  • Prime Cut (1972) – directed by Michael Ritchie
  • Emperor of the North Pole (1973) – directed by Robert Aldrich
  • The Iceman Cometh (1973) – directed by John Frankenheimer
  • The Spikes Gang (1974) – directed by Richard Fleischer
  • The Klansman (1974) – directed by Terence Young
  • Shout at the Devil (1976) – directed by Peter R. Hunt
  • The Great Scout & Cathouse Thursday (1976) – directed by Don Taylor
  • Avalanche Express (1979) – directed by Mark Robson
  • The Big Red One (1980) – directed by Samuel Fuller
  • Death Hunt (1981) – directed by Peter R. Hunt
  • Gorky Park (1983) – directed by Michael Apted
  • Dog Day (1984) – directed by Yves Boisset
  • The Dirty Dozen: Next Mission (1985) – directed by Andrew V. McLaglen – TV movie
  • The Delta Force (1986) – directed by Menahem Golan