Diamond Head

Diamond Head

DVD (Wide Screen)

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Charlton Heston, portraying swaggering bigot land-baron Richard "King" Howland on the Hawaiian island of Kauai, does a spit take when his sister Sloan (Yvette Mimieux) announces that she plans to marry Paul Kahana, a 100% native Hawaiian (played by 100% native Philadelphian James Darren). But Howland, in the meantime, is having a torrid affair with Mei Chen (France Nuyen). During Sloan and Paul's engagement party, Mei Chen's brother comes at Howland with a knife, but Paul intercedes and is killed. Sloan, bitter at Howland for Paul's death, runs off to Honolulu, where she is taken in by Paul's brother Dean (George Chakiris) and his family. Meanwhile, Mei Chen gives birth to Howland's child but dies during childbirth. Howland, ever the rabid racist, refuses to accept the child and Sloan takes it upon herself to care for it. After an angry fight with Sloan and Dean, Howland is confronted with a personal dilemma -- whether to continue on with his closed-minded ways or to welcome his newborn son into his family.

Product Details

Release Date: 05/31/2005
UPC: 0043396073425
Original Release: 1962
Rating: NR
Source: Sony Pictures
Region Code: 1
Presentation: [Wide Screen]
Time: 1:47:00
Sales rank: 16,390

Special Features

Closed Caption; [None specified]

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Charlton Heston Richard "King" Howland
Yvette Mimieux Sloan Howland
George Chakiris Dr. Dean Kahana
France Nuyen Mei Chen
James Darren Paul Kahana
Aline MacMahon Kapiolani Kahana
Elizabeth Allen Laura Beckett
Vaughn Taylor Judge James Blanding
Marc Marno Bobbie Chen
Philip Ahn Emekona
Harold Fong Coyama
Edward Mallory Robert Parsons
Lou Gonsalves Mario
Frank Morriss Felipe
Clarence Kim Sammy
Yankee Chang Newspaperman
Kam Fong Chun Loe Kim Lee
Erica Boyer Actor
Tom Byron Actor
Billy Dee Actor
Krista Lane Actor
John Leslie Actor
Elle Rio Actor

Technical Credits
Guy Green Director
Pat Barto Costumes/Costume Designer
Jerry Bresler Producer
Malcolm Brown Production Designer
William Kiernan Set Decoration/Design
Sam Leavitt Cinematographer
William Lyon Editor
Marguerite Roberts Screenwriter
John Williams [composer] Score Composer

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Start [8:28]
2. Homecoming [10:26]
3. Dr. Dean Kahana [7:05]
4. Mei Chen [10:27]
5. Bobbie Chen [6:11]
6. Engagement Party [1:50]
7. Last Dance [7:02]
8. An Informal Hearing [6:23]
9. Leaving for Good [8:25]
10. Howland Withdraws [8:28]
11. Home for Good [12:51]
12. Half a Howland [11:08]

Customer Reviews

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Diamond Head 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Old_GuyNY More than 1 year ago
The racism is tough to watch: established wealthy mainland Caucasians versus native Hawaiians (rich and educated vs. poor and educated). But this early 1960s film was a metaphor for the civil rights movement back in the states and the taboos of interracial friendships and dating. The performances are very strong and the actors are in top form. The scenery and locations are superb and the story line is excellent. Not one of the top ten films of all time but an excellent choice and rarely shown anywhere.
ChandlerSwain More than 1 year ago
Were it not for the majestic vistas of the Hawaiian Islands, there would be very little reason to see "Diamond Head", a torpid little soap opera that plays like the most placid of made-for-television films. Charlton Heston huffs and puffs to little avail as "King" Howland, a rich land baron with Senatorial aspirations and the heart of a bigot when it comes to the love life of his sister Sloane (played with confusion by a listless Yvette Mimieux) and his own secret affair with a native Hawaiian played by France Nuyen. Sloane's romantic proclivities seem too disaffected to generate this type of racially-based apoplexy since as soon as her fiancee is dispatched, she happily jumps into bed with his brother, and then drifts from him as well. This all unfolds while "King" spouts endless proclomations denying his responsibility for his pregnant girlfriend while simultaneously advancing intimate overtures toward Sloane; which begs the undeveloped question as to whether "King"'s feelings are racially motivated or an extension of incestuous longings? It's all rather sleazy (and remarkably uninteresting) as the film is buried with a shallow script and distant direction by the far more talented Guy Green. In the end, the only question of interest is which is the more perfectly chisled geological formation: Charlton Heston's profile or Diamond Head itself? The DVD, however, looks and sounds splendid.