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The Left Handed Gun (1958)

Approved | | Western | 17 May 1958 (USA)
After his employer is murdered by rival cattlemen, a troubled and uneducated young cowboy vows revenge on the murderers,

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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...
...
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James Congdon ...
...
Colin Keith-Johnston ...
John Dierkes ...
McSween
...
Hill (as Bob Anderson)
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Deputy Moon
Ainslie Pryor ...
...
...
Paul Smith ...
Smith
...
Pete Maxwell
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Storyline

William Bonney - Billy the Kid - gets a job with a cattleman known as 'The Englishman,' and is befriended by the peaceful, religious man. But when a crooked sheriff and his men murder the Englishman because he plans to supply the local Army fort with his beef, Billy decides to avenge the death by killing the four men responsible, throwing the lives of everyone around him - Tom and Charlie, two hands he worked with; Pat Garrett, who is about to be married; and the kindly Mexican couple who take him in when he's in trouble - into turmoil, and endangering the General Amnesty set up by Governor Wallace to bring peace to the New Mexico Territory. Written by Gary Dickerson <slug@mail.utexas.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

I don't run. I don't hide. I go where I want. I do what I want. See more »

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

17 May 1958 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Billy the Kid  »

Box Office

Budget:

$700,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Interestingly, the title of this movie promotes a common misconception that was proved untrue in 1986. Two almost identical tintypes of Billy the Kid were taken at the same time in 1880. The original of one tintype disappeared years ago. The second original tintype was preserved for years in the Sam Diedrick family and came to light only in 1986. Since tintypes are reversed images, the picture from the first tintype led to the myth of the left-handed gun. After the second tintype came to light, the reversed image was reversed to show the Kid as he actually posed, with a Winchester carbine in the left hand and his holstered Colt single-action on his right hip. See Utley, Robert M., Billy the Kid, A Short and Violent Life, University of Nebraska Press, 1989. Statement following page 110 alongside the picture of Billy the Kid. See more »

Goofs

The film is about western outlaw Billy the Kid, who was in fact right-handed. See more »

Quotes

McSween: [about the murdered Tunstall] Lord God, this was a quiet man. He lived the way a man ought to live. He did not lie. He did not hurt. He listened to any man who spoke to him.
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Connections

Referenced in A Decade Under the Influence (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Rock of Ages
(uncredited)
Lyrics by Augustus Montague Toplady and music by Thomas Hastings
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User Reviews

 
Right-Handed.
9 November 2013 | by (North America) – See all my reviews

Arthur Penn directed this obscure(and umpteenth) filming of the story of Billy The Kid(William Bonny) Paul Newman(utterly miscast) plays Billy as a misunderstood and pensive youth who merely wanted to avenge the death of his employer, an expatriate Englishman and cattle rancher murdered by a corrupt sheriff and his men because they didn't want the competition. Billy hunts down and kills the men responsible, but becomes a wanted criminal as a result. His friend and lawman Pat Garret(played by John Dehner) reluctantly pursues him, as Billy's fame grows... Terrible film is unbearably slow and uninteresting; a real chore to sit through, and misinformed title makes it look even worse!


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