Lust for Gold (1949) Poster


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The Root of All Evil
theowinthrop27 February 2005
The "Lost Dutchman" Gold Mine has entered American folklore as one of those unattainable, and menacing, treasures. Supposedly Jacob Walz found it in the Superstition Mountains of Arizona, and died without ever revealing fully it's location. At least a dozen people have died violently searching for it. Therefore this film easily adds to the story of greed and blood that covers the wealth of that forgotten mine.

I liked the negative performances of the leads (Ford, Lupino, and Young), none of whom are likable or redeemable. It was very unusual to see them in such characterizations (although Lupino had played some villainous types, like "Betsy Broke" in "The Light That Failed"). Young was still a few years from his first decent role, the weak drunkard in "Come Fill The Cup". Ford usually played good guys, although he did play the politically ambitious Civil War madman in "The Man From Colorado" in this period. But here they all cut their teeth quite well in the film as low lives.

The interesting thing is that they are not the only villains - greed also percolates in the modern part of the movie, where the hero (William Prince) discovers the most unlikely, deadly villain facing him at the end.

Altogether a worthwhile film.
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How to find 20 million dollars in gold. Make a sleeper like this one
JB-127 June 2000
Like it's academy award winning predecessor, "The Treasure of Sierra Madre", Gold and the greed that comes with it make for a compelling motion picture.

"Lust For Gold" is really two stories, one set in the present (at least 1949 when the film was made), one set some 50 years earlier. The contemporary part of the story begins with a man named Barry Storm searching for gold. He is no ordinary prospector though. His grandfather was the legendary Jacob Walz who had discovered the "Lost Dutchman Mine". Storm is not the only one looking for the gold however. Among the others are an explorer, and a killer.

A powerhouse trio of stars, Glenn Ford, Ida Lupino and Gig Young, are the protagonists of the historical part of the story. Ford plays Walz, an evil man who finds the gold mine and Lupino, is a no good woman one of many trying to get her hands on the treasure, and Young is equally villainous as Lupino's husband.

There are many elements to this story and they are blended to perfection. S Sylvan Simon, more known as a "B" film director for MGM, had the perfect read on this one. He came into his own as a helmsman with this picture. Unfortunately, this was his last film, succumbing to a heart attach at the age of 41 not long after the completion of this.

Besides, Ford, Lupino and Young, William Prince as Barry Storm has the best role of his acting career. The film boasts a supporting cast of several people who went on to fame and fortune on television. Among them, Edgar Buchanan (Petticoat Junction) Paul Ford (The Phil Silvers Show), Jay Silverheels (The Lone Ranger) and Will Geer (The Waltons).

This film, not made on a big budget, is a real sleeper. It is a great example of what can happen when professionals like these go out to mine a great film. It comes up solid gold
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A film noir western
johno-2127 April 2006
I haven't seen this film in a long time and it seems to be a relatively unknown film but this is worth looking for. This is the story of the lost Peralta mine in Arizona's Superstition Mountains near Pheonix better known in legend as The Lost Dutchman's Mine. The film begins in the present day of the film's release of 1949 and we discover there have been several murders recently related to the unknown whereabouts of the mine. The film goes back in time to 1880 and tells the story of the German-born prospector John Walz erroneously called The Dutchman. Between 1880 and his claims to have discovered the mine that had been known by the native Arizona Indians long before, and up to 1949 some 20 murders have been associated with the mine. This film takes some liberties from the story of Walz who didn't come to the area until he was 58 years old and by the time of the film's setting in the 1880's he was in his 70's. Glen Ford stars as Walz in this unusual film noir/western. Ida Lupino is Julian and Gig Young is Pete. In the excellent supporting cast are Edgar Buchanan, Will Gere, Jay Silverheels, Arthur Hunnicut, Paul Ford and William Prince as Barry Storm who wrote the book Thunder God's Gold from which this film is adapted from. S. Sylvan Simon was a versatile director best known for comedies he directed for such comics as Red Skelton and Abbot & Costello but also a film noir director of such films as Grand Central Station, I Love Trouble and Washington Melodrama. Archie Stout who would win an Oscar along with Winton C. Hoch for their photography in The Quiet Man is this film's cinematographer. Ida Lupino would tap Stout to be the cinematographer of her directorial debut in Never Fear, the first of three films they would do together. I would give this an 8.5 out of 10.
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There's mystery, action, murders, romance, treasure, singing, double-crossing & more in this exciting western.
wrbtu12 March 2000
An excellent movie with a complicated plot. The story starts & ends in the present (1948); a long flashback sequence in the middle describes the time period 1880-1887. The grandson of the rediscoverer of the richest goldmine in America (worth $20 million back in those days!) goes to search for the mine, but becomes involved in a series of unresolved murders. The stars of the movie (Ford, Lupino, & Young) are all part of the flashback sequence. There's mystery, action, murders, romance, treasure, singing, double-crossing & more in this exciting western. All the actors do a fine job (Edgar Buchanan is great in a small role & we get to see Jay Silverheels just before he started doing Tonto in the Lone Ranger TV series). The plot is long & winding & holds the viewer's interest, & the conclusion is highly ironic & oh-so frustrating! Highly recommended for western & treasure & romance fans. This one rates a 10!
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"I wouldn't know a gold mine if I fell into one."
classicsoncall13 June 2007
Warning: Spoilers
I rather enjoyed the description of the Superstition Mountain area of Arizona in the film's opening narrative as 'Satan's Private Art Gallery'. The picture itself seemed to offer a preview of hell's future citizens with it's gripping story of the Lost Dutchman Mine, discovered by Jacob Walz in the 1880's at the end of a Sharp's rifle and a host of dead bodies. Though I don't know how much of the story's background is true historically, the legend of the Mexican Peralta brothers is displayed in a noirish flashback within a flashback. In it, the Apache Indians led by Cochise look like the most realistic tribe of Native American Indians I've ever seen portrayed in cinema, including I suppose "Dances With Wolves".

The cast is respectable and well suited for their roles, all appearing in the movie's main flashback story. Prospector Walz is portrayed by Glenn Ford, while Ida Lupino impresses as the gold digging (no pun intended) wife of Gig Young's character, in hiding from a murder rap back in Wisconsin. The locals of Florence Junction get a howl out of Pete's (Young) remark to Walz at the barber shop - "You can have my place", Walz not yet realizing what the town gossipers have been guffawing about.

In all of these period pieces I get a kick out of reminders of an earlier, simpler time - how about the sign in Julia's (Lupino) bakery shop - 10 cents a dozen for doughnuts!

Besides the main characters, it's also cool to see Will Geer, Paul Ford and Jay Silverheels in supporting roles, with a feisty Edgar Buchanan shuffling cards in his hat looking for that elusive ace of spades. Stay sharp and you also might recognize Billy Gray as the 'cookie boy'. As for Lupino, it seems I only ever see her playing roles with a dark side, as she did in team ups with my favorite actor Humphrey Bogart - 1940's "They Drive By Night" and 1941's "High Sierra". In fact, with the mountainous terrain at the center of this picture, that might have been a good name for this flick as well.

With it's gold fever theme, colorful cast of characters, and greed at every turn, this is a worthwhile follow up to the better known "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre", released a year prior in 1948. Not as strong as 'Sierra', it's still pretty much a sleeper hit for fans of this unique genre, a mix of Western and gritty film noir.
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Undervalued Columbia Classic
vitaleralphlouis24 July 2005
From its initial release in 1949, to the VHS forty years later, to the DVD this year, Columbia Pictures never had a clue how great this movie is. Always under promoted, always passed off as just another cheap western; until it was listed on eBay where buyers have been hungrily going for it. The unique structure has a present day (1948) narrative set in Florence, Arizona, as the Dutchman's grandson seeks the Lost Dutchman mine. This part is the first 20 minutes and the final 20 minutes of the movie. In the middle is a gritty, excellent flashback that tells the Dutchman's story: Greed, romance, betrayal, more betrayal, and more greed. Frankly, I've watched the 40 minute middle of this movie over 50 times. It always grabs me. I was 11 years old when I saw this movie at the Silver. It impressed me then, but more so now. Be sure you see this one.
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Treasure of Sierra Madre Meets Duel in the Sun and Film Noir
dphelan-16 December 2005
I saw this on TV years ago and was very impressed and needless to say the recent DVD release got me really excited. I am pleased to say LUST FOR GOLD lives up to my memory. The first thing that struck me was the film noir aspects of LFG - the flashback structure, the first person narration, the anti-heroes of the flashback story and those dark shadows and sinister characters. I have always loved Ida Lupino and what a great femme fa-tale she makes - cold, greedy and obsessed with "lust for gold". Glen Ford is at his most villainous and gruff - although his German accent comes and goes.Gig Young is the perfect scorned husband patsy. There are surprises galore like the abrupt ending of the flashback and the parallel "natural" threat that is a warning to the modern day hero and the undoing of the villain. Coming a year before WINCHESTER 73, LFG is one of the earliest noir westerns ( like Blood on the Moon and Pursued) and has a cast of noirish actors fulfilling their doomed roles. A real classic!
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Enjoyable retelling of the legend.
VernC19 December 2001
I saw this film in first release, and still remember it well. It is a rehash of the more enjoyable legends of the Lost Dutchman's Mine in the Superstition Mountains of Arizona. The casting of solid pros for all the roles probably lifts the film beyond the level of programmer. Gig Young was years away from the recognition that came with "They Shoot Horses Don't They?" and somewhat a prisoner of his classical good looks. Glenn Ford, not conventionally handsome, was a star at the time. People still search for the Lost dutchman, or "Dutchman's Lost Mine" in Arizona to this day. It would be a shame if someone found it.
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Thar's Gold in That There Movie
dougdoepke7 November 2008
"Have a gumdrop," offers the cranky Jacob Walz as he woos the scheming Julia Thomas (Ida Lupino). Not the most romantic way of winning a lady's affections, but then Walz can afford a million gumdrops, having just found the fabulous Lost Dutchman gold mine. No wonder she looks pleased taking a little gooey one.

Don't let this fool you-- the movie's a fine under-rated adventure yarn, skillfully weaving together two time-lines surrounding the West's most legendary lost mine. So who's murdering unwary fortune hunters in the real time-line (1949)? Maybe if we follow the flashback to the 1880's we'll find out. It's then that Walz stumbles onto the mine first worked by Mexicans who ended up being massacred by Apaches. From that point on, the story really takes off.

Excellent production values. The earth-shaking special effects are unexpected and expertly done by the usually budget-minded Columbia studios. Ditto the cliff-side sets that blend well with background. Note how efficiently the script establishes the relationship between Julia and husband Pete (Gig Young) in their first scene, one that maybe more importantly satisfied censors of the day.

It's a complicated story-line, but very well coordinated by director S. Sylvan Simon. Note how effectively legend, fact, and melodrama are combined into a coherent tale of enchantment. Who would not be enticed by the real life clues leading to the mine's location-- all the coded pictographs, mysterious window rocks, and elusive sun spots. I expect more than a few would-be adventurers set- out because of this 90 minutes. However, let's hope they didn't set-out like many characters in the movie-- apparently without necessary provisions, that is, nary a burro, pack-horse or jeep in sight. Even Julia unfortunately appears in the desert sans hat!

Still and all, it's a fine cast. Was there ever a better sleek-looking gigolo than Gig Young, or a more soulful emoter than Lupino. She sure gets her chance, sweating her way up those sharp rocks in a nice slice of poetic justice. Ford's really excellent in those early scenes as the hard-bitten outsider. Note, however, how quickly he becomes Americanized losing his distinctive Dutch accent in the later scenes. And too bad Will Geer, the hayseed sheriff, disappeared from movies for decades courtesy the Hollywood blacklist. His grin here is one of the slyest on record.

Topping things off, the movie finishes up in an exciting action-filled climax with an especially droll final word. All in all, I wouldn't be surprised that the project was inspired by the success of the previous year's Treasure of the Sierra Madre, a movie with a similar theme of gold and adventure. I'm just sorry this little nugget hasn't achieve greater recognition for the highly entertaining sleeper it is.
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Dark, Unembridled Greed
Noirdame793 December 2006
Warning: Spoilers
A rather grim but extremely satisfying Western directed by S. Sylvan Simon, features Glenn Ford as Jacob "Dutch" Walz, a German who discovers "the richest goldmine in the world" in 19th century Arizona. Although not as well-known as other Columbia Westerns, it holds up very well, and is much more appreciated now than it was when it was released in 1949. Juliet Thomas (Ida Lupino) is the cold-hearted woman who pretends to admire Walz as a man, when in fact she just wants to know where his mine is located. She goes so far as to put him up in her home after he collapses in a drunken stupor on the porch of her bakery, and later lets him court her. She pretends to be German (even briefly speaking to him in his native tongue), and feigns ignorance and disinterest in his newfound status as a wealthy citizen. Her pursuit of Jacob only infuriates her estranged husband, Pete Thomas (Gig Young), who wants to be back on her good side (as well as her bed), and so they quietly conspire together to learn the location of his mine and rob Jacob of his fortune. But he is soon onto them and it ends on an interesting showdown on Superstition Mountain.

Despite its serious tone, the film has some light-hearted moments, never more wonderfully presented as Juliet shows Jacob her family album and he comes across a photograph of her as an "au natural" baby, or the moment after Jacob hands off the cookies he bought from Juliet's shop to a young boy, who collapses under the weight of two massive baskets full! And Lupino shows her independent mind and capabilities in this unsympathetic role, while Gig Young's scoundrel manages to gain a little sympathy as the ignored husband. But Ford, who rarely played villainous roles, really brings uncompromising realism as a greedy, self-serving, ill-tempered man (the scene involving the little girl and him allowing her to "play" with his shotgun is a classic example of this). His attempt at a German accent falters in some sequences, but this does not deter from his performance.

This aspect of the movie is actually shown in flashback, the opening being of Jacob's grandson Barry Storm (William Prince) trying to find the mine and solve the mystery of the many puzzling, tragic deaths of those who have attempted to discover it. Fans of the Lone Ranger television series will enjoy the early, uncredited appearance of Jay Silverheels as a deputy.

Now I know why greed is among the seven most deadly sins!

The DVD features a few theatrical trailers.
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Chasing smoke in the Superstition Mountains....
merklekranz17 March 2008
There is nothing more exciting than a quest for treasure. In fact, even if the treasure is only a legend, people will look for it. In "Lust For Gold", the treasure seekers exhibit the lust, greed, and paranoia that often overtakes logic. Glen Ford as Jacob Walz is so afraid that his hidden mine will be found out by the angry crowds following him, that he falls prey to the scheming Ida Lupino and her jealous husband, Gig Young. The story of how the mine was lost, and the supposed reliable clues of how to find it, are told in a very logical flashback scenario. The movie moves quite quickly and is beautifully photographed. Even if there never was a treasure, "Lust For Gold" is a treasure itself. - MERK
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The Lost Dutchman Gold Mine and Satan's private art gallery.
Spikeopath23 November 2011
Lust for Gold is directed by S. Sylvan Simon and adapted for the screen by Richard English & Ted Sherdeman from the novel Thunder God's Gold written by Barry Storm. It stars Ida Lupino, Glenn Ford, Gig Young and William Prince. Music is by George Duning and cinematography by Archie Stout.

Superstition Mountains, home to the Lost Dutchman Gold Mine, and home to many deaths because of it...

Is it a mythical legend or is it fact? What we do know is that the story of The Lost Dutchman Gold Mind, apparently located somewhere in the Superstition Mountains, East of Phoenix, Arizona, is one hell of a story and makes for an entertaining and interestingly structured Western flavoured movie. Hell! The film even has a tricky little back story that saw author Barry Storm, who was portrayed in the film by William Prince, sue the makers for misrepresentation of his character. Even citing Communism as being what he claimed were some underhand tactics. Further reading on this subject can be found on the internet and it's most interesting stuff. Also noteworthy is that director S. Sylvan Simon (I Love Trouble) was originally only producing the movie, direction was to be by George Marshall (Destry Rides Again/How The West Was Won), but the two of them clashed considerably so Simon took on directing duties as well.

What should be said from the outset is that first time viewers would be well advised to read up on the legend of the Lost Dutchman Mine first. This will help considerably to enjoy the film more. This is because the picture covers three different time periods in history, with the beginning and end taking place in present day (1949 that is), and the centre bulk of the story set in 1880 as Dutchy Waltz (Ford) finds the gold and promptly finds hassle (the whole town) and treachery (Lupino's sultry femme fatale Julia Thomas) comes as part of the deal. The third point in history comes by way of an explanation as to the Apache Indian origins of the gold. None of it is confusing, but the flow of the film is inevitably stop-start, and with Prince's character (Barry Storm is related to Dutchy Waltz) providing a one note narration, film isn't as "great" as it should be.

However, there is a lot of "great" things "in" Lust for Gold. Cast are mostly ace, with Lupino a dominating presence and Ford doing a nice line as, well, a sympathetic bastard! In secondary support you get a roll call of actors who have earned their spurs in the Western genre. Edgar Buchanan (Devil's Doorway), Will Geer (Broken Arrow), Arthur Hunnicut (The Big Sky) and Jay Silverheels (The Lone Ranger TV series and films). As fun and intriguing as the story is, and it is both, the best thing about the film is undoubtedly the location shooting by Archie Stout (Fort Apache). Originally shot in Sepia tones, the DVD release of the film is in crisp black and white (the Region 2 DVD offers a quality print), where the Superrstition Mountains make for an imposing presence throughout the tale, the beauty and hazards of the rock formations are expertly realised by Stout's photography.

Although one can imagine Marshall would have stitched the story together better, and possibly got more mileage out of Gig Young's hapless husband character, Simon doesn't scrimp on the action sequences. There's plenty of fisticuffs within, plus a pulse raising Apache attack sequence. He also proves competent at honing a sweaty stand-off section, where the thirst becomes unbearable under the burning sun. This is a precursor to a genuinely eye opening turn of events before we zip back to the present day. It's then when you most likely will feel like I did, bitten by a yearning to get back to the old West in the company of gold hungry varmints and duplicitous females. 7.5/10
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Evil And Greed
bkoganbing29 October 2008
Shot on location in the area of Superstition Mountain in Arizona, Lust For Gold ranks as one of the best westerns ever made, best films Glenn Ford ever made, best films Ida Lupino ever made and definitely the best item from director Sylvan Simon. This is one no holds barred tale of greed that makes Treasure Of The Sierra Madre look like Mary Poppins.

It's the story of the famed Lost Dutchman Gold Mine which actually didn't belong to a Dutchman at all. It was on a sacred Indian site, that first the Spanish discovered and then was rediscovered by Glenn Ford's character Jacob Walz, a German immigrant who was called 'Dutchman' as many Germans were back in the day.

The story is a two track item, the modern story centers on William Prince who is hunting for the legendary lost gold mine his grandfather Ford had rediscovered. There have been some murders committed in the Superstition Mountain area, but that doesn't deter Prince even after he finds the latest victim and reports the crime to Sheriff Paul Ford and his deputies Will Geer and Jay Silverheels.

While visiting a nursing home for some of the old pioneer settlers, Prince hears about his grandfather who had in fact run out on his grandmother and child to search for gold in Arizona. Ford is one evil man in this, one of his few times he plays a bad guy. But he gets involved with some equally bad people in Ida Lupino and her husband Gig Young who would like to find out where Ford's mine is and steal it from him.

The flashback story has several cast members coming to a violent end, both by homicide and by earthquake in one case. The modern story however, the ending for the murderer on Superstition Mountain will haunt you forever once you've seen it. I saw Lust For Gold over forty years ago and it still stays with me.

The cast is great, the cinematography on Superstition Mountain is breathtaking and the movie will never leave you once seen.
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Raw Rudimentary Western
Robert J. Maxwell14 January 2006
Warning: Spoilers
We don't often get a chance to see Glenn Ford as a bad guy, but he's pretty nasty here. He's a mean German who finds a fortune in gold in the Lost Dutchman mine in the Superstition Mountains near Phoenix, Arizona. Carries a Sharp's carbine. Shoots comarades in the back. Torments women while watching them die of thirst. Snarls a lot. Speaks with an accent, or tries to.

But then, come to think of it, nobody is any good in this movie. It has no hero. The narrator in the framing story, William Prince, is a contemporary, a grandson of Ford's. He's not exactly a bad guy, but he's certainly not a good guy either. He's given one of those hard-boiled narratives, ripped still quivering from the flank of a nearby film noir. "I figured I had it comin' to me. Nothing' else mattered." That sort of thing.

Ida Lupino sells her body for the gold. Gig Young pimps his wife. Will Geer smiles sardonically and wipes out people with his rifle.

Everybody is corrupted and some die because of their greed. The lust for gold is disgusting and uncivilized. Where do I get some?
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If You Think Everyone Is A Bad Guy, This Is Your Kind of Movie
oldblackandwhite13 May 2011
Lust For Gold is one of those movies where the title tells the story. Everyone in this story from the leads down to the most insignificant extra is just eaten up with a mad, insatiable obsession with gold. I should say everyone in both stories, since this movie presents a story within a story. The modern (1949) story starts with a murder mystery, not resolved until the last reel, after a flashback to the 1880's which takes up most of the running time.

This is a well filmed, well directed, and well acted picture with an intriguing story line, yet it fails to be truly entertaining because it lacks a single well developed character who is likable. The three principle players of the Old West story, Glen Ford, Ida Lupino, and Gig Young are absolutely unredeemable, cruel, wicked scumbags willing to lie, steal, cheat, betray, commit murder and adultery to get the gold and keep it. Even the bland, young hero of the New West story, played by William Prince, though basically decent, seems foolish and unpleasant because of his single-minded obsession with finding the lost gold mine. In the Old West story every minor character is portrayed as vicious, snippy, gossipy, and above all greedy. There is some suspense in the story, or at least it holds your attention and keeps you interested in what happens next. Yet it is not truly suspenseful, because that requires that you care about what happens to the characters. And you can't care about the type of lowlifes who inhabit this unremittingly grim picture. If there had been just one major character I could have cared about, I would have rated Lust For Gold a star higher. As is, it is a very unsatisfying movie.

It's probably a coincidence the producers of this movie decided the print it in sepia tone, but it provides the appropriate look for the type of person who views life thru feces-tinted lenses. Lust For Gold will thoroughly validate this this type's nihilistic philosophy. Those with a happier outlook on life may wish to skip it.
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The Superstition Mountains
jotix10013 September 2009
Warning: Spoilers
The legend of the gold mine buried in Arizona's Superstition Mountains, is what attracts young Barry Storm to come get the treasure. Supposedly, he is related to Dutch Walz, the man who discovered where the Indiasn buried the treasure. Now Barry has come to the rugged territory to try and claim it for himself. As the story opens, Barry witnesses the killing of a man who he believes is also looking for the illusive gold. The only thing to do is report it to the local authorities, but he is surprised when the sheriff Early tells him this man is about the fifth one killed pursuing the treasure. He is sent back to point to Ray Covin, a deputy, the location.

In flashbacks, the action goes back to the late 1800s when Dutch Walz, an adventurer happens to be at the place where the the old mine was sealed by the Apaches, who believed the mountains were a sacred place. Walz makes a mistake, common to most newly rich individuals, he goes into the nearest town with his findings attracting the curiosity of the general population.

Unknown to him, Julia Thomas, who owns the town's bakery, learns about Dutch Walz. She formulates a plan to snare the naive Walz, who falls under the spell of her beauty. Unknown to Dutch, Julia is married to Pete, a man that she doesn't love anymore, but who sees the opportunity as well to get some of Walz's money for himself. Julia and Pete follow Dutch into the area where the gold is hidden, but a natural disaster intervenes in their claim to richness.

The interesting aspect of this 1949 MGM film, directed by S. Sylvan Simon is that it combines two genres quite well because it is a western, as well as a film noir because the elements that were injected in the story by Ted Sherdeman and Richard English screenplay. This is a film rarely seen these days and that merits a view by fans of its director. Archie Stout's excellent black and white cinematography enhances Arizona's Superstition Mountains. For those days, where special effects were in their infancy, Mr. Simon stages fights at the rim of cliffs that one wonders how they were staged.

Glenn Ford makes a good Dutch Walz. The immensely talented Ida Lupino plays the ambitious Julia. Hers is a smaller role, but she puts enough heat to steal the picture. A mustachioed Gig Young is seen as Pete. Will Geer has a good opportunity as Ray. Edgar Buchanan, Wiiliam Prince and Paul Ford are also in the supporting cast.

A seldom seen treat.
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Nifty little Western
vincentlynch-moonoi25 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
There's a lot to like here.

First, the film is based on a real legend of the West -- the Lost Dutchman's Mine, and parts of the movie were filmed in the Superstition Mountains east of Phoenix.

There's also a few things not to like alternating shots that clearly were filmed in the mountains, and then shots of mountains that were so fake looking that it was almost laughable. Like the frequency at which boulders were falling on people (although the earthquake scene is quite good). And if you think...could there really be that many rattlesnakes? Well, that answer is apparently yes.

Ida Lupino, never one of my favorites, is quite good here as the mastermind behind stealing Glenn Ford's gold. The only problem is that Glenn Ford (as the Dutchman) is just about the worst villain you can quite a different role for him. Gig Young as Lupino's husband is no gem either. I didn't think I was familiar with the "hero" of the film -- William Prince -- but later realized that I knew him for his much later, work as an older character actor; he was quite good here; surprised he didn't go further in film. Edgar Buchanan has a small role here, and it seems as if his voice-overs may have been done by someone else. Will Geer is another bad guy, while Paul Ford is a good guy sheriff. Jay Silverheels has a significant role, but was uncredited for his work.

I'm not saying this is one of the great American westerns, but it's very interesting and worth watching.
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A Fool's Gold
Ed-Shullivan14 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
What would you do if you really thought there was an opportunity to become wealthy beyond your wildest dreams but you also knew there was a real risk that your very life is at stake? This is the story of one such man whose name was Jacob (The Dutch) Walz played by Golden Globe winner and is a renowned western star Glenn Ford. Jacob Walz has previously heard the tall tales of the Superstition Mountains and there have been many men before him who have lost their lives in trying to find this treasure trove of gold hidden somewhere in the Superstition Mountains.

One day another old miner named Wiser played by the cagey old character actor Edgar Buchanan suggests that he has over heard some key information from one of the three (3) surviving Mexican brothers who originally discovered than buried their gold in Superstition Mountains. So Wiser suggests to Dutch that they partner up with the result being a 50/50 split and so they agree to shadow the Mexican who has come back to reclaim his previous mined gold. Of course Dutch who is much younger than Wiser agrees to the 50/50 split with Wiser but you can guess what the outcome is if one of these two partners were not able to make it back out of the Superstition Mountains.

This film is filled with endless greed, the power of instant wealth and the hypnotic effect that gold can have on the residents of an entire town. Yes there is a beautiful and conniving woman in the name of Juia Thomas (Ida Lupino) who has been married for the past five (5) years to a dreamer and unsuccessful businessmen named Pete Thomas (Gig Young). Now this married couple also want to get their hands on the gold so that they can live their own dream of unbridled wealth and freedom the gold could bring them. This film depicts that gold conquers one's marriage vows and we can see that either Julia and/or Pete would be just as happy to claim the gold for themselves than to have to share it with their loving spouse.

What all of these greedy gold seekers forget is that when you place a dead carcass in front of a pack of hungry wolves only the strongest will get to eat. Even then the strongest wolf needs to fear that the next day there will be someone stronger than he is who is hungrier as well. Such is the case in Lust for Gold where greed, deception in both business partnerships and love will rear its ugly head, and of course there is vengeance as this town of wolves who walk on two legs all pine for this hidden treasure of the gold in the Superstition Mountains.

I would not turn my back on any one of these greedy characters and this feature film is a reminder that instant wealth is not reality and most likely will lead to heartbreak and pain, and maybe even loss of life for a fool's gold.

I give this western drama a worthy 7 out of 10 rating.
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Where there's gold. there's greed!
mark.waltz25 November 2015
Warning: Spoilers
We all have a childhood memory of watching a film and retaining a certain line of dialog or particular scene. If you are lucky, you will discover that scene or particular speech in an adulthood and finally have a title to add to the memory.

That is the case for me with "Lust For Gold", an adult western with certain elements of film noir, much like " Pursued" and "The Furies". I happened upon this several years ago and just about choked when the scene from my childhood came back. My brother and I had been watching this some rainy afternoon and we both laughed at the scene where Glenn Ford happens to leave a shop with two baskets of cookies. He gives them to a little boy who happened to be close to my age with truly comical results. For years afterwords until our adolescence came to an end, we would remind each other of the line.

The story surrounds a rich gold mine and the mystery surrounding an alleged curse. Starting in the present day with Ford's grandson William Prince trying to find it, then flashes back 60 years to Ford's discovery of it and how it ruined his life.

Along the way, he falls for the secretly scheming Idea Lupino, a married woman who pretends to be in love with him to get her hands on the bulk of the hidden claim. Sort of like a period version of " Double Indemnity", it ends up with the two playing cat and mouse with each other which leads to an ironic conclusion.

A very intelligent opening narration by William Prince sets the intrigue in motion and there is a fine cast of character actors in support, among them Paul Ford, Hayden Roarke and Edgar Buchanan. A great bit by an old lady claiming in 1949 to Prince leads to a funny sequence with Ford from years ago where the obnoxious little old lady becomes an obnoxious little girl. This is smart in every way, making it a sleeper of a western film noir that is hard to resist.
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Excellent Little Film
JLRMovieReviews8 July 2014
Glenn Ford and Ida Lupino star in this film about gold, gold, GOLD! It opens with William Prince, who's Glenn Ford's grandson. He is following a guy looking for the Lost Dutchman mine, but, as the guy gets nearer, he is shot and killed. When William goes for the law, he's told several people have been killed before in search of the gold. William goes in search of the truth about his grandfather and where he hid the gold, by way of records and the local senior citizens home. By way of a flashback we see a pretty rough Glenn Ford, who has earned a reputation of being very mean. This dramatization plays out how he discovers and hides the gold and how others hear of it and want it for themselves. Of course, Ida Lupino is one of them. Despite the fact she's married to Gig Young, she sets her sights on Glenn and his gold. Also starring Will Geer and Edgar Buchanun, this is a very entertaining western film noir. In fact, this was director S. Sylvan Simon's only film noir. This has all the elements needed for a fulfilling experience: the chemistry of the two leads, the mysterious allure of the gold along with the desperate lust for gold which drives people wild with passion. But who is killing the people looking for the gold, and where is it, and will it ever be found? Based on a very real place and certain events, this film delivers the goods with excellent actors, all looking out for themselves and for that pot of gold.
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Amazingly brutal for 1949...
MartinHafer23 June 2011
Warning: Spoilers
While I really don't think there is a genre called 'Western Noir', this film seems to blend a traditional western with the traditional film noir to create a very unusual hybrid--and a very good one at that. And, a very brutal film--one of the more cynical and brutal films of the era.

The film is based on some legendary lost mine in Arizona--one that apparently MIGHT exist but apparently people have been murdered in pursuit of this mine. It's a fictionalized piece about the history of the mine and it's taught in a very unusual fashion. The beginning and end of the film are set in the present day--with the grandson of the man who discovered the mine trying to locate it once again. Then, the middle portion is about that man who discovered it--a very unsavory character played by Glenn Ford. In some ways, he's great--very cold and nasty--an easy guy to hate. But, he also is supposed to be a German--and his accent seems to come and go! I would have either not made him German or re-shot the scenes or simply got an actor who had a better command of the language and accent. But I cannot complain too much, as he's given a lot of wonderfully juicy moments--brutal and realistic to a level rarely seen at that time. Overall, this is an exceptional film because of its unflinching approach to the subject matter.

If you do watch the film, there are two actors to note. First, in a tiny scene there is a little boy who is given a HUGE number of cookies. The kid is Billy Grey--'Bud' from "Father Knows Best". Also, one of the deputies is Jay Silverheels--'Tonto' from "The Lone Ranger".
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Dutchman's Gold
Lechuguilla26 December 2015
The Lost Dutchman Mine is a fascinating legend from the 19th century. Gold is said to be buried somewhere in the Superstition Mountains, near Phoenix, in the Arizona desert. If this film had really been about the legend, it could have been as poetic and mysterious as the old song by Walter Brennan, "Dutchman's Gold".

Alas, the film script, while it is set in the right geographic location, veers away from the legend too much and into a dreary love triangle between three scoundrels. That's my main complaint. The opening narrator, Barry Storm (William Prince), is not the main character. Storm appears in the first and third Acts, both rather brief relative to the middle Act. Storm's purpose is mainly to introduce the film's two big "stars".

This middle Act features Glenn Ford and Ida Lupino. They play two of the three scoundrels in the love triangle. None of this middle Act has much to do with the Lost Dutchman legend, except as backstory, which is told in one very long flashback, and initiated by a minor character. The length of this flashback is way too long, making it dreadfully disconnected from the first and third Acts.

Another problem is that, despite the claim that this is "the true story of the Superstition Mountains", I found it hard to tell which elements of the film were actually true and which were fictional. I had to research the topic afterwards to determine that an earthquake apparently did occur during the time period, as the film suggests. But the true-life existence of some characters is highly questionable. Also, the main geologic landmark in the area, Weavers Needle, looks nothing at all like it is portrayed in the film. Thus, the film is as frustrating and confusing as the legend. The best Act is probably the third, which has some good suspense, as two characters fight one another on a high cliff.

B&W photography and acting are acceptable. Production design is largely irrelevant. Background music consists mostly of nondescript elevator music, common in old movies. I dislike the casting of Glenn Ford and Ida Lupino, which conveys the impression that the film is really intended as a career vehicle for these two Hollywood actors.

To enjoy this film, one needs to forget the legend of the Lost Dutchman, and focus instead either on the obvious theme of greed in the Old West or the casting of two big-name "stars", as some viewers always do.
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Great location
Alex da Silva9 June 2013
William Prince (Barry) goes in search of gold in the Superstition Mountains of Arizona. He is the grandson of Glenn Ford (Dutch) who discovered the Lost Dutchman's Gold Mine located there in the 1880s. Before that the Indians had sealed it up after the Spanish had discovered it. To the Indians, the area represents a sacred ground dedicated to the "Thunder God" as there are many storms in the area.

Well, Willy Prince follows another explorer Hayden Rorke (Buckley) who claims he knows where the mine is located, only Rorke doesn't make it as he is shot by a sniper. It seems that a sniper has been killing anyone who gets close to this particular gold mine. Prince rushes back to report the crime to Sheriff Paul Ford (Lynn) and Deputies Will Geer (Ray) and Jay Siverheels (Walter). The rest of the film is told in flashback as we learn of the history of Ford's discovery of the mine and his association with crafty baker Ida Lupino (Julia) before we return to solve the outstanding mystery of who the killer is. And whether or not there is any gold for the taking.

As regards the cast, the acting is OK with a few faults along the way. Ida Lupino starts well but ends up overdoing the melodrama while Glenn Ford is clearly no good at all with a German accent. Thankfully, you don't really notice at first - he sort of slips in and out of something that isn't really German anyway. And his singing in a saloon sounds more Russian to me. Lupino does impress when she speaks in German to him, though. I actually found myself in sympathy with the character of Gig Young (Pete) who plays Lupino's husband, even though he isn't very nice. William Prince is a bit naïve and his narration at the beginning is fairly monotonous.

My personal triumphs in this film include the following 2 moments - 1) spotting tarty saloon girl Myrna Dell (Lucille) who I have just seen in another western from the same year entitled "Roughshod" which is as good as this film, and in which she has a more substantial role, albeit a tragic one; 2) correctly naming the killer at the beginning of the film.

The storyline is nicely layered with different sections and you find yourself siding with different characters at different times even though you are aware that nobody is particularly likable in this film. It's still very watchable, though.

Anyway, I'm off for another visit to Arizona. The plan is to stay up in the Superstition Mountains for a year just watching the moon. I'll hopefully crack this case once and for all. This film has been really useful for my preparation. I'll be taking plenty of water, some rattlesnake anti-venom serum, an umbrella for shelter from the storms and falling rocks from earthquakes, some gumdrops and lots of meat to feed the mountain lions (although the film didn't mention these).
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"Lust for Gold" All About Greed Theme **1/2
edwagreen25 October 2010
Warning: Spoilers
After the first 20 minutes of the film, I was asking myself, where are the main stars: Ida Lupino, Gig Young and Glenn Ford? My question was soon answered when a grandson of Ford, looking for the elusive mine filled with gold, stumbles on to an old age home where an old-timer relates the story of his grandpa and the others within his orbit.

I must say that flashback was used effectively here but the film boils down to a western atmosphere, where our 3 ruthless stars are caught up in the gold madness, after the Ford character discovers the gold.

In modern times, 20 people were murdered while searching for the treasure. The role of the greedy- woman was tailor made for Ida Lupino, and Gig Young is effective as her murderous husband, agreeing to her scheme, before realizing that he is being used as well. Ford is excellent as the prospector, vicious and insane to the core.

The scenes showing Ford torturing the other 2 prior to the earthquake hitting are amateurish at best. When we head back to modern times, it becomes obvious who the killer is, since he was missing in action each time a killing occurred.
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a film about the gold fever, different, unpredictable, not to be missed.
Warning: Spoilers
Sometimes when you expect a certain pattern from a film it is hard to accept something that does not fit into it. Lust for Gold has a different style and probably that is the reason it did not get the praise it deserved. Like the Treasure of Sierra Madre it has no good guys. And like Citizen Kane it is told in flashbacks. Glenn Ford, Ida Lupino and Howard Duff interpret such bad people,you wonder who will outdo the other in treachery. There is an excellent narrator and a story that will keep your curiosity alive until the end. By taking place in two different epochs the film shows how in certain places we are still living the westerns, only technology has changed. The ironic ending is great. A film not to be missed
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