Casey's Shadow & Halloween
Those who admired Martin Ritt's achievement in Norma Rae might wish to take a look at the film he made just before, Casey's Shadow, which flopped terribly in its Spring 1978 release, despite almost unanimous critical praise. In New West, Stephen Farber noted: “It's rare to find a family movie that an adult can watch without getting nauseous. Therefore, Casey's Shadow arrives as a delightful surprise. Martin Ritt's film tells an old-fashioned sentimental story - about a Cajun family raising a horse for the All-American Futurity sweepstakes - but tells it sensitively, without insulting the audience's intelligence. Carol Sobieski's script plays against cliche. The characters and relationships are observed with uncommon clarity and perception. The central figure, the disheveled horse trainer Lloyd Bourdelle (Walter Matthau), is coolly, honestly characterized.” Even Les Blank was impressed with Ritt's evocation of Cajun life in Southwest Louisiana!