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The Tin Star (1957)

Approved  |   |  Western  |  31 January 1958 (Finland)
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 3,320 users  
Reviews: 35 user | 19 critic

A cynical former sheriff turned bounty hunter helps a young, recently appointed acting sheriff with his advice, his experience and his gun.



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Title: The Tin Star (1957)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Morgan 'Morg' Hickman
Sheriff Ben Owens
Nona Mayfield
Michel Ray ...
Kip Mayfield
Bart Bogardus
Dr. Joseph Jefferson 'Doc' McCord
Mary Webster ...
Millie Parker
Peter Baldwin ...
Zeke McGaffey
Richard Shannon ...
Buck Henderson
Ed McGaffey
James Bell ...
Judge Thatcher
Howard Petrie ...
Mayor Harvey King
Russell Simpson ...
Clem Hall
Hal K. Dawson ...
Andy Miller
Jack Kenney ...
Sam Hodges


Veteran bounty-hunter Morg Hickman rides into a town in danger. The sheriff has been killed, and young inexperienced Ben Owens named a temporary replacement until a permanent can be found. Ben wants to be that permanent replacement, so needs to impress the townspeople with his skill. When he finds that Morg was a sheriff for a long time before he became a bounty-hunter, he asks the older man to teach him. Morg thinks that being a sheriff is a foolish goal, but agrees to instruct Ben in handling people, more important to a sheriff than handling a gun. Written by Ken Yousten <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




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Release Date:

31 January 1958 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Der Stern des Gesetzes  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


When the stagecoach driver rushes into town to report that they were robbed, there is a small trail of dust following each side of the stagecoach. When it comes to a full stop, the dust is almost completely settled down. Next they cut to a slightly closer view of the stage and surrounding areas, and the air is full of dust all over the scene, much more than the stagecoach ever caused to fly up. See more »


[first lines]
Sheriff Ben Owens: Uh, ju-just getting the feel of these guns.
Morg Hickman: Where's the sheriff?
See more »

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User Reviews

Very fine, relationship driven western
30 July 2000 | by (warren michigan) – See all my reviews

Anthony Mann's magnificent pyschological westerns, beginning with Winchester 76 and ending with Man of The West,were among the glories of American film in the nineteen fifties.Tin Star is unique in this series of films for two reasons. First, it is slightly "lighter' and more optimistic in tone that the other, darker, films.Secondly, while the other films center around a single, obsessed,( if not POSSESSED)antagonist, usually played by Jimmy Stewart) Tin star is built around a relationship between TWO protagonists, superbly played by Henry Fonda and Anthony Perkins. In any other Mann western, Fonda, disillusioned Sheriff-turned cynical bounty hunter would be the near-pyschotic tragic hero.Here, instead,he is the teacher- in fact, the spiritual instructor- of Perkins' naive, stubborn, but brave and idealistic sheriff. The film ends, not with Fondas character trudging off to "walk the earth", like Ethan Edwards, but rather with him ready to begin a new life with son and a family,. At the way, Perkins has become a man capable of leadership in the community. This is, in short, a remarkably rich, thought-provoking film.

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