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Three Hours to Kill (1954)

Approved | | Mystery, Western | 4 November 1954 (USA)
Framed for murder, Jim Guthrie barely escapes lynching by the town mob, becomes a wanted fugitive for three years but returns to find the real killer.

Director:

(as Alfred Werker)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Stephen Elliott ...
Sheriff Ben East
...
Niles Hendricks
Laurence Hugo ...
Marty Lasswell
...
Sam Minor
...
Carter Mastin
...
Polly
Charlotte Fletcher ...
Betty
...
Deke
Felipe Turich ...
Esteban
Arthur Fox ...
Little Carter
...
Deputy Vince
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Storyline

After three years on the run, Jim Guthrie returns with the scar of a rope burn on his neck. In flashback we learn how he was framed for murder but then escaped from the lynch mob just as he was about to be hung. Tired of running, he has returned to find the real killer and the Sheriff has given him just three hours to do it. Written by Maurice VanAuken <mvanauken@a1access.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

framed | fugitive | three | hour | kill | See All (64) »

Taglines:

The Man With The Rope Scar ON HIS NECK!

Genres:

Mystery | Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

4 November 1954 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Gunslinger  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

During the gunfight between Guthrie (Dana Andrews) and Sheriff Ben (Stephen Elliot), Guthrie reacts at one point as if he's hit by a bullet to his right shoulder, falling to the ground and grabbing his shoulder in pain. But then he fights Ben one on one and winds up shooting him with no ill effects, and there's no bullet hole or blood in the area of his right shoulder. See more »

Quotes

Jim Guthrie: Did you know we were going to get some cattle with the place?
Laurie Mastin: Cattle? How many?
Jim Guthrie: Two. We're going to be cattle barons.
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Soundtracks

Beautiful Dreamer
[Heard playing by musicians at the dance.]
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User Reviews

Dana Andrews' other anti-lynching movie
14 May 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"The Ox-Bow Incident," a tragedy about lynching in the Old West, helped make Dana Andrews a star. "Three Hours to Kill," a little Western mystery he made after his stardom cooled, is not nearly as grim (or as good), but it is fairly gritty and it holds your interest.

Andrews plays a cowboy who's framed for murder and almost lynched. He escapes with only a rope burn on his neck thanks to the help of his true love, played by Donna Reed. A few years later, as a fugitive, he returns to town to solve the crime and clear his name -- and he gets three hours to do it. (The circumstances of this are a bit complicated.)

Things become really tricky when the former sweethearts cross paths again. It turns out they've got serious issues, the kind that were not often addressed in "B" Westerns in the 1950s.

"Three Hours" is pleasingly fast-paced, wrapping up in well under half the time in the title. It keeps you guessing, which is the most important job of a whodunit, and it even has a couple of surprises after the mystery is solved. Not great, but good if you have a little time of your own to kill.


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