A group of Westerners seek oil in Latin America, fighting over their claims and the local prostitute. When glamorous Sibyl appears, "Lucky" Cardan warns her that no woman can stay "decent" in "this country." Sibyl vows to prove him wrong.

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(play), (adaptation) | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview:
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Cardan
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Sibyl Shelton
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Wilson Shelton
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Winter
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Goldie
Arnold Kent ...
Hugh Pickerell
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Kilgore Shelton
George Kuwa ...
Willie
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Storyline

A group of Westerners seek oil in Latin America, fighting over their claims and the local prostitute. When glamorous Sibyl appears, "Lucky" Cardan warns her that no woman can stay "decent" in "this country." Sibyl vows to prove him wrong.

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mexico | based on play | See All (2) »

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Drama

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Release Date:

25 February 1928 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Cartas na Mesa  »

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1.33 : 1
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This film was preserved in 2006 by the Library of Congress in Washington, DC. See more »

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Gusher
20 August 2013 | by (Ramsey, NJ) – See all my reviews

Ever seen an oil field up close or in movies? The oil rig pumps and pumps and pumps, an exercise in tedium, like watching a sailboat race. Then, when there is a strike, the oil shoots skyward as does the excitement level among the crew. That is similar to the pace of "The Showdown", a character study about a rigger (George Bancroft) somewhere in Central America. Just he and his partner in grinding monotony, until they are joined by several outsiders. The film gradually picks up steam until the unexpected ending.

They are joined by an old rival (Fred Kohler), an old friend and his overdressed wife (Neil Hamilton, Evelyn Brent), and a British oilman, all under one roof, owned by Bancroft. Tension and tempers build in the claustrophobic setting, aggravated by the presence of Brent (Hamilton leaves her behind as he goes off the find oil) as the only woman in the hot, isolated shanty. The only visitor is Bancroft's ' friend' Goldy, the saloon floozy from 'downriver'.

Good acting all-around carries the picture and the bellwether is Bancroft. Strong support by Kohler, Bancroft's lecherous rival who tries to hit on Brent during the rainy season when no one can work. Also worth a mention is Leslie Fenton who plays Bancroft's partner in a sympathetic role more complex than the rest of the cast.

The picture gradually builds to a climactic and satisfying ending for a picture which spelled 'boredom' at the outset. This is a Paramount picture shown at Capitolfest, Rome NY, in a 35mm copy on loan from The Library of Congress.


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