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It's just after the Civil War and Ben Shelby arrives looking for Johnny Tallon whom he plans to kill. Shelby was the only survivor of a battle due to the cowardice of Tallon. Thinking Tallon dead, another man who lost a brother at the same battle arrives to kill Tallon's blind brother. Tallon arrives to find Shelby and his brother fleeing. Then they are attacked by Indians and Shelby and Tallon must now fight together postponing the inevitable showdown. Written by
Maurice VanAuken <email@example.com>
A 1950's western sleeper with a complex plot and complex characters... and action
It is several months after the end of the civil war, and Ben Shelby (Ben Johnson) shows up at the Tallon Ranch to kill John Tallon (Dane Clark). Tallon had given himself up to the confederates just before the war ended and this led to a company of the Arizona volunteers being wiped out, Ben's brother among them. He meets John's young, blind brother Ned (Peter Graves) and Uncle Charlie. John is not around and Ben ,saying he knows John from the war, decides to wait for him. A problem comes up when he gets very close and Ned and Uncle Charlie. John has become a bank robber and a killer which Uncle Charlie has kept from Ned and asks Ben to also keep the secret because Ned worships his brother who supposedly was a war hero. Word finally reaches them that John is dead and Uncle Charlie and Ben have to tell Ned.
There are additional problems. The Indians find out they are going to be moved to Oklahoma, don't like the idea and go on the warpath. Local land baron Dave Parker, who also lost brothers in the Arizona volunteers, finds out about John Tallon's act of cowardice and wants all Tallon's dead. This is just an excuse to get their ranch.
AS you might guess. John Tallon finally shows up, but he is not the coward and killer you might expect, and Ben, besides fighting Dave Parker and the Indians, must face the possibility of killing a close friend's brother This is not exactly a B western. It was shot in New Mexico, has a cast of superb actors, more plot than there is in two current films( actually a plot worth of a major film) and complex, conflicted characters. I saw this film when I was very young and found out recently that it has not aged. It is well worth tracking down and watching. A very good sleeper
There is a problem with the color. The film was shot in Cinecolor, and it is just not as good as Technncolor of even Eastman color.The colors fade and blues and greens are lost. This film deserves a restoration.
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