I was dubious about this film but thought Elia Kazan directed it so it couldn't suck. All I knew of Griffiths was his sheriff character on The Andy Griffiths Show. You know the show about a town in Dixie that has no black people in it? In case you're wondering about that here's a map of race distribution in the U.S. I'm not offended in a politically correct way by this; it just bugs me for being untrue.
There is a show on FX called, Justified. It's supposed to be set in rural Kentucky. There are constant references in the script to Kentucky. Kentucky is practically a character in the show and yet the show is filmed in southern or central California. The producers could have used B.C. or even northern California but no. The vegetation doesn't match. Live oaks and palm trees simply don't grow in KY. The mountains don't look right either.
**// end of digression
Griffiths gives a stupendous performance in this film. Really nailed the megalomania of his character, Lonesome Rhodes. Nailed the hillbilly drifter bit too.
This must be the earliest instance in film where someone inadvertently ends his career by forgetting the mic is always on.