A twelve year old Joey Slade sees his father gunned down in front of him and decides that he will dedicate his life to ridding society of all outlaws. He assumes the name Jack and as an ... See full summary »
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As a man returns home to see his dying father, the story of the alienation between father and son is told in flashback. Purposely letting his daughter's lover get lynched, shooting the ... See full summary »
Joseph H. Lewis
A twelve year old Joey Slade sees his father gunned down in front of him and decides that he will dedicate his life to ridding society of all outlaws. He assumes the name Jack and as an adult takes on hired gun type jobs in order to achieve his revenge. Written by
Their reviewer called it..."one of the most violent pictures ever to come out of Hollywood." The story runs thusly(Monogram synopsis): With a violent orphaned boyhood in Texas behind him, ex-cavalry trooper Jack Slade ( Joseph A. Slade), using a revolver given him by his foster father, Tom Carter (Harry Shannon), quickly builds a reputation as a "legal' gunman throughout the west. As district manager for the Overland Stage Line out of Julesburg, Colorado in 1859, his killing continues. His bride, Virginia Dale (Dorothy Malone), and his boss Dan Traver (Paul Langton), watch helplessly as Slade goes his violent way. The men he is after are outlaws, chief among them the drunken Jules Reni (Barton MacLane) whom Slade had replaced as the district manager for the stage line, and who has joined the gang of the Prentice boys...Rude (Richard Reeves), Tad (Duane Thorsen) and Ned (Ron Hargrave.) The Prentice gang holds up a stage, and Slade, Traver and others go after them and track the outlaws to a cabin and fire it during a gunfight, in which Slade accidentally kills Old Tom (Hank Patterson), who has been working as a cook for Reni and the gang. After this, Slade turns really bad, drinking heavily and not listening to Virginia's pleas. Traver is forced to fire Slade. He is drinking in a saloon when Reni and another gunman come in and Slade is trapped. Just as Reni gets set to let Slade have it, Virginia bursts in and kills Reni's partner with a small derringer. Slade's gun accidentally cuts down an innocent stranger as he guns down Reni. Wounded, Slade bids Virginia farewell and rides out of town.The aroused citizens demand that Slade be lynched, but Traver prevails upon them to let him follow Slade and bring him back for fair trial.
But Jack Slade ain't having none of that. The only Italian influence on this American Western is the influence it later had on some real bad Spaghetti westerns---there were only five good ones ever made anyway and all five of those would still benefit by some editing snips---,and the influence Mark Stevens (as Jack Slade) had on future western badman heroes. Stevens was great in a departure role,simmering Dorothy Malone burned the edges off some of the film frames...and Jack Elam (as Tobey Mackay)stole the few frames he was in as a badman with a fatalistic sense of humor. The major drawback is Barton MacLane's usual one-dimension badman.
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