The variational approach, which is used to solve the Reynolds equation based on the assumption of constant temperature, is extended to the generalized Reynolds equation calculation. The direct solution method of the generalized Reynolds equation is presented, where the pressure of the nodal points and the cavitation zone boundary of the film can be determined without iterating. A simplified one-dimensional thermal model is built on the basis of the original two-dimensional thermal model. The model not only concerns the thermal effects of the lubricating film, but also offers a direct and rapid numerical algorithm for solving lubricating film temperature field. The numerical results of the temperature distributions for the one model are in good agreement with experiment, and less computing time is needed.