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Good Day for a Hanging (1959)

Approved | | Western | January 1959 (USA)
After claiming his daughter's childhood-sweetheart killed the marshal, one man finds himself in conflict with his daughter, his fiancée and many of the townsfolk.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Marshal Ben Cutler
Margaret Hayes ...
Ruth Granger (as Maggie Hayes)
...
Eddie Campbell
...
Laurie Cutler
...
Paul Ridgely
Wendell Holmes ...
Tallant Joslin
Edmon Ryan ...
William P. Selby, Attorney
...
Coley
Kathryn Card ...
Molly Cain
Emile Meyer ...
Marshal Hiram Cain
...
George Fletcher
Russell Thorson ...
Harry Landers
...
Deputy Ed Moore
...
Deputy William Avery
...
Olson
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Storyline

It's been more than twenty years since Ben Cutler (Fred MacMurray) wore a badge, but when the town's bank gets robbed, he joins the posse. After the chase, where he saw Marshal Cain (Emile Meyer) get killed, he can't say "no" when the town asks him to take over the Marshal's duties. However, that same town starts to turn against him when he takes his new duties seriously by arresting and testifying against the killer... a boy, Eddie 'The Kid' Campbell (Robert Vaughn), who grew up in this town and comes from a broken home, garnering the sympathy of the townsfolk, who'd rather believe one of the other escaped bank robbers shot the sheriff. This is compounded by his daughter, who still has a crush on Eddie, even though after his mother died two years ago, he left town with not a word to her since. She, too, is convinced that Eddie is still that good little boy everyone remembers, and can't believe he's been changed, by his new life of riding with outlaws. Written by AzRanger {ArizonaRanger @ Hotmail . com}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

HANGING'S TOO GOOD FOR A RAT LIKE THIS! (original print ad - all caps) See more »

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

January 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Dois Passos da Forca  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Color:

(ColumbiaColor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to Robert Vaughn in his memoirs, Fred McMurray was the frugal type. He always brought his sandwich for lunch on the set and was also the stingy kind for many details. See more »

Goofs

At the climax, the lamp hanging from the ceiling of the jail swings with a period of about 2 seconds which mean that the rope from which it hangs was 1m long (which makes for an unusually tall ceiling). Shortly after it swings with a period of 1 second which would mean the rope was shortened to 0.25m. See more »

Quotes

Ruth Granger: Eddie is just a boy. Tom was killed by a hardened criminal.
Ben Cutler: Do you think this kid is any less hardened? Since when is a young rattlesnake any less poisonous than an old one?
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User Reviews

Fred MacMurray was great in serious roles
30 January 2005 | by (Chicago, IL) – See all my reviews

Of course this is a 1950s period piece that says more about that time period than it does about the 19th Century, but we need to remember that most films, particularly Westerns, seemed to reflect the exact time period they were made. This is nothing new, and it probably will not change any time in the future.

What audiences forget is that Fred MacMurray was GREAT in serious roles. Because we saw him on TV and Disney movies, we became used to the dimwitted, milquetoast type of character and I, at least could not understand why he was so respected as an actor. But, he had a long illustrious career long before the 1960s, and that career had mostly been of him as a leading man in Westerns. In fact, MacMurray was disappointed that all he ever got cast in was serious roles, and he got tired of it.

In this movie, his acting is so "underdone", that it is flawless. I have a great deal of respect for him, and wish he had made even more serious movies later in his life.


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