6.9/10
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Chisum (1970)

Cattle baron John Chisum joins forces with Billy the Kid and Pat Garrett to fight the Lincoln County land war.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Henry Tunstall
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Jess Evans
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Sue McSween (as Lynda Day)
Geoffrey Deuel ...
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Sallie Chisum
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Amos Patton
Lloyd Battista ...
Neemo
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Bradley Morton
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Storyline

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 {J-26}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THE LEGEND - John Wayne is "Chisum" See more »

Genres:

Biography | Western

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

29 July 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Chisum and the Lincoln County Cattle War  »

Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$6,000,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

U.S. President Richard Nixon commented on the film during a press conference in Denver, Colorado, on 3 August 1970. In doing so, he used the film as a context to explain his views on law and order:

"Over the last weekend I saw a movie-I don't see too many movies but I try to see them on weekends when I am at the Western White House or in Florida--and the movie that I selected, or, as a matter of fact, my daughter Tricia selected it, was Chisum (1970) with John Wayne. It was a western. And as I looked at that movie, I said, "Well, it was a very good western, John Wayne is a very fine actor and it was: a fine supporting cast. But it was just basically another western, far better than average movies, better than average westerns."

I wondered why it is that the western survives year after year after year. A good western will outdraw some of the other subjects. Perhaps one of the reasons, in addition to the excitement, the gun play, and the rest, which perhaps is part of it but they can get that in other kinds of movies but one of the reasons is, perhaps, and this may be a square observation-is that the good guys come out ahead in the westerns; the bad guys lose.

In the end, as this movie particularly pointed out, even in the old West, the time before New Mexico was a State, there was a time when there was no law. But the law eventually came, and the law was important from the standpoint of not only prosecuting the guilty, but also seeing that those who were guilty had a proper trial". See more »

Goofs

When John Wayne prepares to punch Forrest Tucker, his fist hits the camera behind his head. See more »

Quotes

Sallie Chisum: I think in some ways, the two of them are a lot alike.
Pat Garrett: Who?
Sallie Chisum: Uncle John, Billy Bonney. Don't you think they are? Don't you?
Pat Garrett: Not in the important things.
Sallie Chisum: Like what?
Pat Garrett: Well, Mr. Chisum's changed with the times. He doesn't like to let on, but he cares... about the people here and in town, about the Indians and the territory. Well, he's independent, and he likes to do things his own way, but he cares.
Sallie Chisum: And Billy doesn't?
Pat Garrett: I guess he can't help it. But you heard him, all he cares about is gettin' those ...
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in John Wayne and Chisum (1970) See more »

Soundtracks

Ballad of John Chisum
Performed by William Conrad (uncredited)
Lyrics by Andrew J. Fenady Music by Dominic Frontiere
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Old Style Western entertainment
15 October 2005 | by (Norfolk) – See all my reviews

One of the last of the old-style Westerns (it always amazes me that it was made as late as it was). John Wayne doing his stuff as only he can

  • huge shoot-outs, classic fist fights, goodies and baddies amazingly


clearly defined, thumping score, oh and that amazing landscape.

If you like Wayne you'll love this, if you don't then you'll hate it. Simple as that. Ben Johnson is superb - as ever, a much underrated character actor.

Someone mentioned the 'silly' title song. I have to disagree. I love those amazingly long opening titles and the grandiose pomposity of the theme tune and its voice-over. All moving into that classic opening shot of Wayne like an immovable great rock on horseback and the horizon. Probably (no definitely) my favourite opening to a movie.

True to history - if it ever is then its by accident. But what do you expect - its a classic old-style western! Finally, was this the last US movie to feature characters with (allegedly) British accents as heroes. ;-)


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