The US Army is under pressure from the desperate relatives of white prisoners of the Comanches to secure their rescue. A cynical and corrupt marshal, Guthrie McCabe, is persuaded by an army... See full summary »
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The peace-loving owner of a general store, who became a town hero when he luckily killed the leader of a gang of bank robbers, is deserted by the townspeople who fear the threatened return of the vengeful bandits.
Alfred L. Werker
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J. Carrol Naish
As has come down to us in western lore the infamous Dalton brothers and associated outlaws came to a violent end in Coffeyville, Kansas when they tried to rob two banks there at the same time. The Last Day is a film by A.C. Lyles and is a fictionalized account of both the Daltons and their plan for this last big score and the citizens of Coffeyville and their response. The Daltons were from Coffeyville and they were violating that well known maxim about defecation where you consume.
The brothers are played by Bob Conrad, Richard Jaeckel, and Tim Matheson and their two running buddies on that day are Tom Skerritt and Christophr Connelly. All of them are tried and true professional criminals, Skerritt with a drinking problem. Only Matheson as Emmett Dalton, the youngest is fairly new at the trade.
The forces of law and order are represented by former gunman Richard Widmark who has settled in Coffeyville with wife Barbara Rush and son Sparky Marcus. He has good reason to think the Daltons are planning a robbery here, but with his past against him can't quite convince the town.
The message here is the same as in classic films like El Dorado, let the professionals handle it. But the marshal is Gene Evans who is old and worn and Widmark is the only one who has experience in these situations albeit from the other end. His past as a gunfighter works against him, especially with one of the bank presidents Logan Ramsey. Ramsey usually plays hateful people and you will hate him even with him ostensibly a good guy.
Giving us a stand by your man message is Loretta Swit playing Conrad's girl friend. In her own way Swit is the standout performer in The Last Day.
Fifteen years earlier The Last Day would have gotten theatrical release. It's a crisp and exciting western especially when the shooting starts.
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