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André De Toth
Having been a spy for Quantrill's raiders during the Civil War, Jeff Travis thinking himself a wanted man, flees to Prescott Arizona where he runs into Jules Mourret who knows of his past. He takes a job on the stage line that Mourret is trying to steal gold from. When Mourret's men kill a friend of his he sets out to get Mourret and his men. When his plan to have another gang get Mourret fails, he has to go after them himself. Written by
Maurice VanAuken <firstname.lastname@example.org>
With Randolph Scott in his best outfit riding his best horse (Starlight) and looking and acting his dusty old best, and with Lee Marvin and Ernest Borgnine at their early villainous peaks, this could have been something. With Andre de Toth directing, it really should have been something. But it's not something. It's not anything, except a mess. Horrendous dialogue, terrible editing (the big gunfight in the mountains is unintelligible until the principals gather to rehash what just happened), and some really bad acting (not so much from Scott, Borgnine, or Marvin, but pretty much everybody else. Alfonso Bedoya is a joy to watch, as always, not because of his acting, which is abominable, but because it's so much fun trying to figure out what it is he's doing with his mouth to make him sound that way. George Macready, who belongs in things like "Gilda" rather than oaters like this, kept getting shoved into Randolph Scott Westerns (four of them). He's incredibly out of place in all of them. And Claire Trevor, so wonderful in "Dead End" and "Key Largo," is wasted here and one's heart goes out to the Oscar-winning actress for having to do such pot-boiling dreck as this a scant five years after winning that Oscar. The attempts at 3-D effects are pretty laughable in their earnestness, and for an action movie, an awful lot of the actual action occurs just off-screen -- saving money on stuntmen and stagecoaches, I suppose, but diluting the feel of the down-and-dirty Western this clearly wants to be taken for. I'll watch anything Randolph Scott did in the Fifties and Sixties, but this one was an absolute chore. I'd sure like to know where to get a coat like that, though.
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