Gunfighter "Brazos" Kane lays aside his guns "forever" when he is forced to shoot his best friend, and decides to join another friend, Bob Tyrell, as a cowhand on the Inskip ranch. Upon arriving there he finds the bullet-riddled body of his friend. He carries the body to the Banner ranch, the largest in the territory, and is accused by Banner of murdering Tyrell; Banner orders Deputy Sheriff Bill Yount, who is in Banner's pay, to arrest Kane. But Kane has the sympathy of Banner's daughter, Jane, who notifies Inskip of Kane's plight, and Inskip arrives in time to prevent a lynching. Sheriff Kiscade dismisses the murder charge for lack of evidence. Brazos then sets out to find the killer of his friend. Bess Bannister, Jane's sister, is in love with the Banner ranch foreman, Bard Macky, and knowing that Bard killed Tyrell and that Kane will track him down, then hampers Kane's mission somewhat by pretending to be in love with him.Written by
Les Adams <email@example.com>
Gunfighters (AKA: The Assassin) is directed by George Waggner and adapted to screenplay by Alan Le May from the novel "Twin Sombreros" written by Zane Grey. It stars Randolph Scott, Barbara Britton, Bruce Cabot, Dorothy Hart, Griff Barnett and Forest Tucker. Music is by Rudy Schrager and Gerard Carbonara and cinematography by Fred Jackman Jr.
A gunman who has laid down his guns finds that circumstances test him to the limit...
It's a familiar formula that any Western film fan can acknowledge as being over used, that's not to say that the right production isn't worth visiting as such, but expectation of something fresh can often lead to disappointment.
Built on solid foundations due to scorching location photography and Randolph Scott prepping himself for greater things in the next decade (see also The Walking Hills 1949), it's a pleasurable piece. It also - via the narrative - isn't afraid to be bold as regards the ultimate decisions made by Scott's Brazos character, giving the pic a darker edge and being all the better for it. Elsewhere, the villains are standard stuff but entertaining regardless, the twin beauties of Britton and Hart have interesting parts to play, and the action scenes are well put together - with the pursuit sequences exciting. Filmed in Cinecolor, it's nice to report this is one of the better photographed Westerns in that format, which is just as well because the Sedona locations are to die for.
Not what you would term a keeper, but for Western fans of the era and Scott fans in general, it's worth its salt. 6.5/10
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