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Dakota Lil is directed by Lesley Salander and written by Maurice Geraghty and Frank Gruber. It stars George Montgomery, Rod Cameron, Marie Windsor and Wallace Ford. Music is by Dimitri Tiomkin and cinematography by Jack Greenhalgh.
Tom Horn (Montgomery) is a Secret Service agent hunting a counterfeit ring. Getting tight with dance hall gal Lil (Windsor), Horn quickly finds himself in the hornets nest.
It's titled after Windsor's character but ultimately it's about Tom Horn during his early years as a good guy before he became a hired gunman. Unfortunately not even the presence of Montgomery and Cameron, two reliable Western performers, can save this lifeless affair. The acting is sub-standard, especially the quite woeful Windsor who seems simply to be a dressage character only. Some of the undercover machinations hold interest, while there are fist-fights and shoot-outs to while away the running time, but even with the latter it's all distinctly routine fodder.
Originally filmed in Cinecolor, some sources show a black and white version, which is the one I saw. It's hard to tell if watching it in colour would improve things as per the scenery et al, such is the flatness of the screenplay, direction and acting performances. 4/10
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