7.6/10
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El Dorado (1967)

Cole Thornton, a gunfighter for hire, joins forces with an old friend, Sheriff J.P. Hara. Together with an old Indian fighter and a gambler, they help a rancher and his family fight a rival rancher that is trying to steal their water.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (novel)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Maria
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John Gabriel ...
Pedro
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Luke MacDonald
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Saul MacDonald
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Storyline

Hired gunman Cole Thornton turns down a job with Bart Jason as it would mean having to fight an old sheriff friend. Some months later he finds out the lawman is on the bottle and a top gunfighter is heading his way to help Jason. Along with young Mississippi, handy with a knife and now armed with a diabolical shotgun, Cole returns to help. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

They were friends. They were enemies. A passerby could not tell which was who. This was the seething sultry Old Southwest. Where loyalties and labels shifted with the sands, the winking of an eye, the wavering of a gun! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

17 December 1966 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Eldorado  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,653,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$6,000,000 (USA)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Robert Mitchum's character was wounded in the right leg and needed to use a right-hand crutch, but Robert Mitchum switched the crutch to the left side in the scene where he drives the wagon. The continuity was so poor that John Wayne (who actually worked continuity in silents while a star college football player, a method used by Hollywood fans to slip players some spending money) had his character mention it in one of the last scenes. Director Howard Hawks enjoyed it so much he left it in the movie. Mitchum's version of this story is that he objected but Hawks had him switch sides with the crutch based on what looked best in that scene. When Hawks saw how bad it looked in the dailies, Mitchum suggested the additional dialogue between his character and Wayne's to cover the gaffe. In the final scene, both Wayne and Mitchum have their crutches under the wrong arm. See more »

Goofs

Bull carries a .56 caliber Colt 1855 Revolving Carbine throughout the film. This rifle is 5-shot cap-and-ball and very slow to reload. Before, and during the shootout at the church Bull fires more than 10 shots very quickly, without the minutes it takes to reload. See more »

Quotes

Mississippi: [Joey slaps Mississippi and he slaps her] Now don't do that again 'cos I can hit a little harder than you.
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Crazy Credits

Possibly due to their fame, the closing cast list does not bill John Wayne and Robert Mitchum. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Something to Do with Death (2003) See more »

Soundtracks

Hotel Piano No. 1
(uncredited)
Music by Harry Sukman
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A pleasure through and through

The credits claim that Leigh Brackett's screenplay for 1967's "El Dorado" is based on a novel, "The Stars in Their Courses" by Harry Brown. The on-screen evidence indicates it was based on Brackett's own script for 1959's "Rio Bravo," in which John Wayne is a gunfighter joined by his buddy, a drunken sheriff, in guarding a town against a corrupt cattle baron. They are joined by a callow but dangerous youth, and a curmudgeonly deputy. In "Rio Bravo," these roles were admirably filled by Dean Martin, Ricky Nelson, and Walter Brennan. In "El Dorado," the Duke once again takes on the gunfighter role, but is joined this time by Robert Mitchum, James Caan, and Arthur Hunnicutt. Nothing wrong with that lineup, even though Caan can't sing like Ricky (Mitchum could probably do a fair imitation of ol' Dino, though). Like "Rio Bravo," this one is directed by Howard Hawks who liked to steal from his own movies. Several scenes in "El Dorado" are nearly exact duplicates of moments from "Rio Bravo" (Mitchum blasts holes into a piano when he suspects that the pianist's off-key playing denotes fear of the killer hidden behind it, whereas Martin found his prey in a saloon balcony after spotting blood dripping into a shot glass).

"El Dorado" is faster paced than the first film, but then it has a shorter running time. It's a pleasure through and through, but "Rio Bravo" is superior. In the latter film, you almost feel that you're holed up with the Duke, Dino, Ricky, and Walter, rather than just watching them.


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