6.9/10
7,448
97 user 44 critic

Duel in the Sun (1946)

Beautiful half-breed Pearl Chavez becomes the ward of her dead father's first love and finds herself torn between her sons, one good and the other bad.

Directors:

King Vidor, Otto Brower (uncredited) | 5 more credits »

Writers:

David O. Selznick (screenplay), Niven Busch (suggested by a novel by) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jennifer Jones ... Pearl Chavez
Joseph Cotten ... Jesse McCanles
Gregory Peck ... Lewton 'Lewt' McCanles
Lionel Barrymore ... Sen. Jackson McCanles
Herbert Marshall ... Scott Chavez
Lillian Gish ... Laura Belle McCanles
Walter Huston ... The Sinkiller
Charles Bickford ... Sam Pierce
Harry Carey ... Lem Smoot
Joan Tetzel ... Helen Langford
Tilly Losch ... Mrs. Chavez
Butterfly McQueen ... Vashti
Scott McKay ... Sid
Otto Kruger ... Mr. Langford
Sidney Blackmer ... The Lover
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Storyline

When her father is hanged for shooting his wife and her lover, half-breed Pearl Chavez goes to live with distant relatives in Texas. Welcomed by Laura Belle and her elder lawyer son Jesse, she meets with hostility from the ranch-owner himself, wheelchair-bound Senator Jackson McCanles, and with lustful interest from womanising, unruly younger son Lewt. Almost at once, already existing family tensions are exacerbated by her presence and the way she is physically drawn to Lewt. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Emotions . . . As Violent As The Wind-Swept Prairie ! See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Western

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 September 1947 (Mexico) See more »

Also Known As:

King Vidor's Duel in the Sun See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$20,408,163
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(roadshow)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was nicknamed "Lust in the Dust", which would later serve as the inspiration for the film Lust in the Dust (1984). See more »

Goofs

In Pearl's shootout with Lewt, her bright red lipstick disappears in the time from she is between the rocks where she is shooting and when she clutches her shoulder. It's not smeared - it's completely gone without a trace. See more »

Quotes

The Sinkiller: I don't really know much about Sam Pierce, oh Lord, but from what I hear, he'd be needing no introduction to you. Seeing how Sam was snatched from his loved ones' arms before they even had time to get a good grip on hm, I'm counting on you to give him a better break up yonder.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The original "roadshow" version ran 144 minutes. The additional 16 minutes, over the commonly-shown 128 minute version, consisted of a musical "prelude," an "overture" (which contained a spoken prologue, by Reed Hadley), and exit music, but no additional scenes in the film. The two additional opening sequences were each inadvertently given the other's label. See more »


Soundtracks

First Party Music
(uncredited)
Traditional
Arranged by Frank Perkins
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Melodramatic Soap Opera in the Old West
20 February 2017 | by claudio_carvalhoSee all my reviews

When Scott Chavez (Herbert Marshall) kills his wife and her lover, he contacts his cousin and former passion Laura Belle (Lillian Gish) and makes arrangements for his daughter Pearl Chavez (Jennifer Jones) to live with her and her family since he will be executed. On the arrival, Pearl is welcomed by Jesse McCanles (Joseph Cotton), the younger son of Belle that is a lawyer that brings her to the huge ranch Spanish Bit that belongs to his father, the invalid Senator McCanles (Lionel Barrymore) that lives on a wheelchair. Pearl is also welcomed by Laura Belle, but the Senator is cold and ironic with her, calling her half-breed. Soon Pearl meets Belle's older son Lewton 'Lewt' McCanles (Gregory Peck), who is a scoundrel and a wolf, and he tells his intentions to her. One night, Lewt forces Pearl and she submits to him and she becomes ashamed and angry with Lewt. Meanwhile the railroad is ready to trespass the Spanish Bit fence and the Senator organizes a group of men to defend his real estate. However the railroad people has a court order and the army on their side and Jesse tries to explain the Senator that he should let them in. However the Senator expels his son from the ranch and when Jesse is going to say goodbye to Pearl, he finds Lewt in her room. Jesse leaves Pearl behind and Lewt promises to marry her; but when she learns his real intention, she believes she is trash and becomes her lover.

"Duel in the Sun" is a melodramatic soap opera in the Old West, with detestable characters. Jennifer Jones does not fit to the role of a naive young woman and the viewer does not feel sorrow for her due to her promiscuous behavior. Gregory Peck has an excellent performance in the role of a scum. David O. Selznick's pretension to make a film comparable with "Gone with the Wind" is quite absurd. My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "Duelo ao Sol" ("Duel in the Sun")


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