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Great Day in the Morning (1956)

 |  Western  |  16 May 1956 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 359 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 3 critic

After a card game Southerner Owen Pentecost finds himself the owner of a Denver hotel. Involved with two women - one who came with the hotel, and one newly arrived from the East to open a ... See full summary »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Ann Merry Alaine
...
Owen Pentecost
...
Boston Grant
Alex Nicol ...
Captain Stephen Kirby
...
Jumbo Means
Leo Gordon ...
Zeff Masterson
...
Father Murphy
Carleton Young ...
Col. Gibson (as Carlton Young)
Donald MacDonald ...
Gary John Lawford
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Storyline

After a card game Southerner Owen Pentecost finds himself the owner of a Denver hotel. Involved with two women - one who came with the hotel, and one newly arrived from the East to open a dress shop - he then has to make even more fundamental choices when, with the start of the Civil War, he becomes one of a small minority in a strongly Unionist town. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THE BUGLE BLAST that echoed thru history!

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

16 May 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Skrupellos  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Jumbo Means: Go back to Georgia, the whole lot of you. Colorado's gonna belong to us loyal Union men - the only part comin' to you is six feet of ground, dug deep.
See more »

Soundtracks

Bonnie Blue Flag
(uncredited)
Music taken from traditional Irish marching song
Lyrics by Harry McCarthy 91861)
Passages intgrated into the score
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Overcrowded
15 June 2008 | by (Claremont,USA) – See all my reviews

Southerner Robert Stack wins a Denver saloon and bar girl (Ruth Roman) from crooked card dealer Raymond Burr on eve of Civil War. Trouble is that southerners are outnumbered in Union-leaning Colorado and need Stack's help to get big gold shipment to Dixie and the war effort. But Stack's only out for himself and is now in fat city with a saloon and a girl. So what's he going to do.

Good core plot, great Colorado scenery, ace director (Jacques Tourneur), and an A-picture budget, yet the results are mixed. For one thing, it looks like Stack's getting the big star build-up since he has to romance not only bar girl Roman but good girl Virginia Mayo too. That's about one girl too many for even the best Western. Here Mayo's part is really unnecessary and drags down the pacing. Besides, do we really care which movie star he ends up with. Still and all, it's fun to watch the girls' bra's duke it out in best 1950's uplift fashion. Also, subplot of orphaned boy (Donald McDonald) adds to what becomes a sprawling story that strays too far from the solid core.

Nonetheless, the cold-eyed Stack makes for a convincing gunman, while no movie with character great Leo Gordon could be a loss. Here he's in a typical role as a Union rowdy ready to fight at the proverbial drop of a hat. He's always reminded me of an early Lee Marvin, with the same virile presence and clarity of personality, but without Marvin's range. Also notable for fine support from the hulking Peter Whitney, a familiar Hollywood face for many years. His quiet scene with Stack remains the film's most intelligent and powerful.

The movie was made during that period when Hollywood had not yet learned to live with TV. Note that even budget-minded RKO comes up with a wide-screen process to show off the spectacular scenery that can't be done on TV. I expect the competition also accounts for the star-heavy treatment that ultimately crowds the plot and slows down events. But with a tighter script and leaner casting, this could have been a first-rate Western, especially considering the wonderfully done final scene.


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