Director Robert Mulligan dies at 83

love with the proper stranger x650By Ray Bennett

LONDON – American director Robert Mulligan, who has died aged 83, never matched his 1962 classic “To Kill a Mockingbird” but he was always able to draw out fine performances from his actors.Robert-mulligan-1-sized

Not only that, but Elmer Bernstein provided wonderful scores to many of his films including “Mockingbird” and four other Mulligan pictures that registered strongly with me as a young man:

“Fear Strikes Out” (1957) with Anthony Perkins as a troubled young baseball player with an overbearing father (Karl Malden);

“The Rat Race” (1960), which Garson Kanin adapted from his own play, showing a new side to Debbie Reynolds and Tony Curtis;

“Love With the Proper Stranger” (1964) starring Steve McQueen and Natalie Wood (pictured), who copped a best-actress Oscar nomination for her performance as a woman who becomes pregnant after a one-night stand;

“Baby, the Rain Must Fall” (1965) with McQueen opposite Lee Remick in a sensuous tale set against Texas honky-tonks based on a play by Horton Foote.

Here’s Mulligan’s obituary in The New York Times

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