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Circa 1900, runaway boy Nugget arrives in an Oklahoma boom town to find his brother...who's a dealer in the casino section of a palatial bawdy house, and lover of the madam, Tacey Cromwell. Together, Nugget, Clint, and Tacey seek respectability in a Colorado mining town. Clint finds work at the town's new bank, while Tacey adopts another orphan, Seely. But Clint is pursued by banker's daughter Judith Watrous, who's seemingly sweet but takes ruthless steps to eliminate competition. Result for Tacey: heartbreak, renunciation, and tears a-plenty. Written by
Rod Crawford <email@example.com>
A woman's drama set in the west not a western. Anne Baxter is aces as Tacey the dance hall queen who wants a simpler life with Rock Hudson, who towers over her, and his brother in a small town until outside forces cause her no end of troubles. She suffers grandly in spangles and feathers all in rich Technicolor but manages to rein in the overheated emotions with a warm controlled performance.
A performance that isn't quite as controlled and all the better for it is Julie Adams' evil rich girl. Always an excellent actress but often cast as the love interest or nice girl she is so deliciously malevolent it's a pity she didn't get a chance to chew the high grade ham more often.
Natalie Wood, her next film after this was Rebel Without a Cause, doesn't have much to do but injects what there is of her part with movie star charisma and spunk. The same goes for Rock who is called upon to be handsome and rather thick. The whole film is really just there to provide a backdrop to the ladies flashy dramatics and on that basis it serves it purpose.
Not available on DVD, hard to believe with any film that has Rock, Anne and Natalie in the cast, this is well worth seeking out.
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