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Chato's Land (1972)

PG  |   |  Western  |  24 June 1972 (Japan)
6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 2,953 users  
Reviews: 49 user | 7 critic

After Pardon Chato, a mestizo, kills a US marshal in self-defense, a posse pursues him, but as the white volunteers advance deep in Indian territory they become more prey than hunters, ... See full summary »

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Title: Chato's Land (1972)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Capt. Quincey Whitmore
...
Joshua Everette
...
Jubal Hooker
...
Elias Hooker
...
Earl Hooker
...
Martin Hall
Sonia Rangan ...
Chato's woman
William Watson ...
Harvey Lansing
Roddy McMillan ...
Gavin Malechie
Paul Young ...
Brady Logan
Raul Castro ...
Mexican scout
Lee Patterson ...
George Dunn
Roland Brand
Peter Dyneley ...
Ezra Meade
Edit

Storyline

After Pardon Chato, a mestizo, kills a US marshal in self-defense, a posse pursues him, but as the white volunteers advance deep in Indian territory they become more prey than hunters, leading to internal strife. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The scream of his victims is the only sound he makes. See more »

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

24 June 1972 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Chato  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The Hooker ranch house and barn are the same as the McBain house and barn in Once Upon a Time in the West (1968). See more »

Goofs

As Captain Whitmore walks down the street in the opening sequence, the direction of his shadow changes from behind him and to his right to in front of him and to his left. See more »

Quotes

[on the Civil War]
Capt. Quincey Whitmore: Hell, it was a good war.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in My Best Friend's Birthday (1987) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Oh a hunting we'll go.
28 January 2007 | by (the Mad Hatter's tea party.) – See all my reviews

Chato is a half-breed Apache Indian who shoots a sheriff in self-defense while in town and finds himself the target of a head hunting posse led by a former Confederate soldier Quincy Whitmore. They track Chato into his own harsh territory and they soon find that the tables have been turned. As now they're the ones trying to survive, while being picked off one by one by Chato and braving the rough elements of Apache territory.

This was the first feature to bring the pairing of director Michael Winner and actor Charles Bronson together (in which they would go on to make another five films). "Chato's Land" is just like any other Winner exercise. This straightforward western tale comes across as crass and rather offbeat in its mean-spirited tempo and bloodthirsty violence. Thanks mainly to Winner's always daring and hard-boiled direction, which is always more workman-like than glitzy. Direction wise, two solid lead performances (Bronson and Palance) and the intrusive handling of transporting you amongst blistering bone-dry location is what keeps one interested. This is because the efficiently simple cat-and-mouse plot (hunters eventually become the hunted) has very little structure to it and is tied along by airy pockets that can slow up the film's momentum. Within the bold context is a passionately thoughtful, though quite blunt message that you could interpret about the intolerance of racism (just listen to the crude dialogues that the thickly verbose script spits out) and an allegory on the Vietnam War (with the men under-estimating their man on his turf). The characteristics between the hunting party (behavioural changes and the character's turning on each other because of the stressful nature they are put into) are reasonably dynamic, with it sometimes getting rather sidetracked from the central focus of the narrative. The dialogues between them are quite heavy, but on the other side of the coin. Charles Bronson gets very little to say (even using some Indian tongue), but still feels nicely fleshed out and tells the story with simple facial expressions and actions.

When Winner wants to get down and gritty, the elaborately relax pacing is broken up by excitingly sudden short bursts of conflict and the tense finale is perfectly fitting. Even a few surprises are illustrated into the dying half of the picture. The isolated atmosphere of the barren location only adds more to the anxiety created by their situation and there are stunning images captured on screen. The camera-work does get some singular shots interwoven within its sturdy foundation. A vintage sounding music score has that potently loud western twang that drenches the film with the right air. The performances are all particularly good. A terrific Jack Palance gives a classy stable depiction of Quincy Whitmore and Charles Bronson was in ripe condition and form as Chato. Making up the marvellous assemble were James Whitemore, Simon Oakland and Richard Basehart.

A competently well-focused and quite brutal western that in the long run is nothing to get too worked up about. In saying that, it's better than the norm.


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