After the Civil War, ex-Union Colonel John Henry Thomas and ex-Confederate Colonel James Langdon are leading two disparate groups of people through strife-torn Mexico. John Henry and ... See full summary »
The McCandles ranch is run over by a gang of cutthroats led by the evil John Fain. They kidnap little Jacob McCandles and hold him for a million dollar ransom. There is only one man who is ... See full summary »
When his cattle drivers abandon him for the gold fields, rancher Wil Andersen is forced to take on a collection of young boys as his drivers in order to get his herd to market in time to ... See full summary »
Taw Jackson returns from prison having survived being shot, to the ranch and gold that Frank Pierce stole from him. Jackson makes a deal with Lomax, the man who shot him 5 years ago to join... See full summary »
Texas Ranger Jake Cutter arrests gambler Paul Regret, but soon finds himself teamed with his prisoner in an undercover effort to defeat a band of renegade arms merchants and thieves known ... See full summary »
George Washington McLintock, "GW" to friends and foes alike, is a cattle baron and the richest man in the territory. He anxiously awaits the return of his daughter Becky who has been away ... See full summary »
As one of the founders of the town of Lincoln, John Chisum is increasingly worried as Lawrence Murphy moves in on the local stores, bank and land by questionable means. Chisum and fellow honest ranch owner Henry Tunstall try and use the law, but Murphy owns that too. Confrontation threatens and Tunstall's man Billy Bonney is not slow to get involved. Written by
Jeremy Perkins <firstname.lastname@example.org>
And you good people witnessed the cowardly and cold-blooded murder of our beloved Sheriff Brady by Billy "the Kid" Bonney right over there. Governor Axtell has appointed a new sheriff, Dan Nodeen. He's offered a $200 award for the kid, and I'm adding a further reward of $1,000, dead or alive.
[Crowd murmurs "$1200"]
Sheriff here has formed his posse. Oh... Have you got anything you want to add to that, Sheriff?
Just this. I'm going to bring Bonney in. Now you people can either help me, or stay ...
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Over the course of his career John Wayne played a few real life characters. Coming immediately to mind are Davy Crockett, William T. Sherman, Frank "Spig" Wead, Genghis Khan and some others with pseudonyms for William F. Halsey and John Grierson. Playing these people would normally impose certain restrictions on an actor who's as larger than life as John Wayne.
But it certainly didn't with playing John Simpson Chisum, New Mexico cattle baron and key player in what has become known in history as the Lincoln County War. Of course the politics involved were a bit more complex than what you would see here. And a whole lot of liberties have been taken with the facts. One of the biggest is the fact that both Chisum and his rival L.G. Murphy died in bed and quite soon after the action of this film.
But if Maxwell Anderson could take liberties and have Mary Queen of Scots and Elizabeth I of England meet, then why can't we have Chisum and Murphy meeting in a final confrontation? After all it's a John Wayne movie and John Wayne movies can only go in a certain way.
The Duke plays Chisum as the Duke, no more, no less. He and other ranchers are being squeezed by a greedy rapacious businessman in L.G. Murphy as played by Forrest Tucker. Others in the cast worthy of note are Patric Knowles as Henry Tunstall, Glenn Corbett as Pat Garrett, Geoffrey Deuel as Billy the Kid, and Christopher George as Dirty Dan Nodeen.
Chisum has in its cast a whole host of familiar Hollywood faces from the past like Bruce Cabot, Ben Johnson, Hank Worden, Edward Faulkner, all Wayne film regulars. It also has the presence of both Glenn Langan and John Agar.
One of the really great things about John Wayne was the way he took care of people, not as charity cases, but giving them parts in his films when they were down. John Agar and Glenn Langan have small roles in Chisum and both were not doing too good at the time. Agar was Shirley Temple's first husband and made a screen debut in Fort Apache. Langan was a promising contract player with 20th Century Fox in the late forties and is best known for being the Amazing Colossal Man. Both were I'm sure grateful for the work and the paycheck. I remember in McLintock Wayne says to his son Patrick who's looking for a job that he doesn't give jobs, he hires men. That was something in real life he lived up to.
The Lincoln County War has been told in any number of westerns right up to the two Young Guns movies of the Eighties. Chisum is not the best or the worst retelling of the tale. But it is a good John Wayne western and that takes in a lot of territory pilgrim.
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