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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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Sue McSween (as Lynda Day)
Geoffrey Deuel ...
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Amos Patton
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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 HERO - John Wayne is "Chisum" See more »

Genres:

Biography | Western

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

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Release Date:

29 July 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Chisum and the Lincoln County Cattle War  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$6,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

During filming, John Mitchum introduced John Wayne to his patriotic poetry. Seeing that Wayne was greatly moved by the word, Forrest Tucker suggested that the two collaborate to record some of the poetry, which resulted in a Grammy-nominated spoken-word album, America: Why I Love Her. See more »

Goofs

Men wore hats outside in Old West nearly 100% of the time. It was so rare that a man would remove his hat outside for more than brief periods that it would be the subject of discussion when or if it occurred.Multiple scenes in the film show men outside , hatless , and this is ignored or treated as "normal." See more »

Quotes

John Simpson Chisum: [lighting the sergeant's cigar] Se rgeant, there's one thing I oughtta tell you; if you lay a hand on White Buffalo again, I'll kill ya'.
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Connections

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

Soundtracks

Turn Me Around
Sung by Merle Haggard
Lyrics by Norman Gimbel
Music by Dominic Frontiere
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User Reviews

 
Amazingly close to history
21 June 2009 | by See all my reviews

The first few times I saw this movie, I hadn't read the history of the Lincoln County Land Wars.

However, in recent years, with the convenience of the internet at hand, I read the histories along with watching the movie. Compared to the amount of factual change that most movies based on a history put on film, this movie is not far from being spot on.

In fact, the amount of direct action that John Wayne's character, Chisum, took in the film, is probably the element that is the most out of place.

Billy the Kid really did work for an English rancher involved in the dispute. His boss really did fund a rival general store with a lawyer. Both the English rancher and the lawyer were murdered by the faction controlled by the rival general store.

Billy the Kid really did get his outlaw career kicked off in seeking vengeance for his boss and mentor's murder. Pat Garret really was supported for sheriff by John Chisum, who somehow managed to stay out of the thick of the feuding even though his use of huge tracts of public grazing land was part of the heart of the dispute.

So history buffs can safely enjoy this movie knowing that history is just bent a little, and not ripped completely asunder as the case would be with most movies. LOL That said, this is a very entertaining western. John Wayne is on top of his game as a cattle baron, and the supporting cast does a fine job. It includes a bit of everything: rustling, gunfights, stampedes, crooked sheriffs, greedy bad guys, heroic good guys. It has more plot surprises than the normal western (and that is precisely because it kills off certain characters approximately when and how they died in the real events).

All in all, an enjoyable and surprisingly informative film about a real "old west" feud.


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