5.9/10
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16 user 9 critic

The Man Behind the Gun (1953)

Approved | | Western | 31 January 1953 (USA)
An undercover government agent battles insurrectionists whose want Southern California to secede and become a slave state.

Director:

(as Felix Feist)

Writers:

(screenplay), (story)
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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Major Ransome Callicut
...
Lora Roberts
Dick Wesson ...
Sgt. 'Monk' Walker
...
Capt. Roy Giles
Lina Romay ...
Chona Degnon
...
Sen. Mark Sheldon
...
Bram Creegan
Katherine Warren ...
Phoebe Sheldon (as Katharine Warren)
...
Cpl. Olaf Swenson
...
Buckley
...
Vic Sutro (as Tony Caruso)
...
'Kansas' Collins
...
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Storyline

Posing as a schoolteacher, undercover government agent Ransome Callicut arrives in 1850's California to gather intelligence about an insurrectionist plot to have the southern part of the state secede to become a slave state. When he discovers a hidden cache of weapons, he reveals his true identity and assumes command of the local army post. Aided by sidekicks Monk Walker and Olaf Swenson he battles political assassination and other intrigues to unmask the ringleader of the plot and keep the Golden State in the Union. Written by Gabe Taverney (duke1029@aol.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

An Easy-Going Gent with Deadly Guns...and a Reputation to Match!

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

31 January 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Man with a Gun  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

The film is set in 1850s. Most, if not all, of the firearms employed in the film post-date the American Civil War (1861-1865). Examples include Colt Single-Action Army revolvers and various lever-action rifles that first appear in the 1870s. See more »

Quotes

Major Ransome Callicut: [as voiceover narrator] Los Angeles - thirty difficult miles from San Pedro. Here in the tropical sun it was hard to believe that the City of Angels had its share of unholy activities.
See more »

Connections

Features Captain Horatio Hornblower R.N. (1951) See more »

Soundtracks

Adios, Mi Amor
(uncredited)
Written by Nestor Amaral
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User Reviews

 
All Gloss, No Grit
9 November 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I'm a huge Randolph Scott fan, but this film is a dud. The whole thing has a canned, fake, soundstage feel to it, with truly awful rear-screen projection. It has a good plot idea that the screenwriter has successfully buried in a nitwit script, which makes it impossible for the audience to become immersed in the action and truly care about any of the characters. The directing is pedestrian, and only accentuates how bad the script is instead of helping to improve it. I've seen plenty of thoroughly enjoyable "soundstage productions" before, but this is not one of them. All it does is make you appreciate the gritty Scott/Boetticher films all the more.

Randolph Scott is tanned, trim, and shines that million dollar smile throughout. He's always a pleasure...even in the worst of his films. Aside from Scott, the other main reason I wanted to see this movie was due to how much I enjoyed Ms. Wymore in Errol Flynn's movie, "Rocky Mountian". In "Man Behind the Gun", she is just as beautiful, and you can tell she's a good actress, but she was forced to say some pretty dumb lines, and the blocking she was given by the director was truly awful. I've only seen Phil Carey in "Operation Pacific", and he plays the exact same character here...an arrogant pain-in-the-butt you want to beat into unconsciousness. I guess it proves he's a good actor...he made me hate him. There are some lame attempts at comic relief that only detract from the film, in my opinion. Although there are many elements to knock, I must say that I found myself truly enjoying the two Spanish songs sung in the musical numbers...but that's not why we go to see Randolph Scott movies, right?

There are definitely worse Scott films out there, and this one certainly isn't unbearable, but it also certainly couldn't be deemed anything beyond mediocre.


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