6.9/10
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35 user 16 critic

Blood on the Moon (1948)

Unemployed cowhand Jim Garry is hired by his dishonest friend Tate Riling as muscle in a dispute between homesteaders and cattleman John Lufton.

Director:

Robert Wise

Writers:

Lillie Hayward (screenplay), Harold Shumate (adaptation) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Robert Mitchum ... Jim Garry
Barbara Bel Geddes ... Amy Lufton
Robert Preston ... Tate Riling
Walter Brennan ... Kris Barden
Phyllis Thaxter ... Carol Lufton
Frank Faylen ... Jake Pindalest
Tom Tully ... John Lufton
Charles McGraw ... Milo Sweet
Clifton Young Clifton Young ... Joe Shotten
Tom Tyler ... Frank Reardon
George Cooper ... Fred Barden
Tom Keene ... Ted Elser (as Richard Powers)
Bud Osborne ... Cap Willis
Zon Murray ... Nels Titterton
Robert Bray ... Bart Daniels
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Storyline

When a shady-looking stranger rides into town to join his old friend it is assumed he is a hired gun. But as the new man comes to realise the unlawful nature of his buddy's business and the way the homesteaders are being used, the two men draw apart to become sworn enemies. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

LUSTY! VIOLENT! SAVAGE! See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 November 1948 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Nacht in der Prärie See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Beause director Robert Wise thought that it was unnatural that the winner of a Western brawl usually finished the fight vigorously, he made it a point that both fighters would be exhausted and worn out at the end of this one. See more »

Quotes

Tate Riling: Your cut will be $10,000.
Jim Garry: What do I have to do to earn it?
Tate Riling: Lufton's tough and my ranchers aren't. You make up the difference.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Exists in computer-colored version. See more »

Connections

Featured in 100 Years of the Hollywood Western (1994) See more »

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User Reviews

 
I can buy me that kind of friend for $75 a month and no questions asked.
15 July 2011 | by SpikeopathSee all my reviews

Blood on the Moon is directed by Robert Wise and is adapted from a Luke Short story by Lillie Hayward and Harold Shumante. It stars Robert Mitchum, Barbara Bel Geddes, Robert Preston, Walter Brennan, Phyllis Thaxter, Frank Faylen, Tom Tully and Charles McGraw. Music is by Roy Webb and cinematography by Nicholas Musuraca. Story has Mitchum as drifting cowboy Jim Garry, who after receiving a job offer in the mail from old acquaintance Tate Riling (Preston), finds himself pitched in the middle of a war between cattle ranchers and homesteaders.

Effective and tightly crafted Western that has garnered many favourable remarks, due in the main to its ability to veer away from formula suggested by the plot and the technical film noir touches brought about by the great Musuraca. With Mitchum turning in one of his great screen dominating performances, film is driven forward by the psychological aspects brought about by thematics such as duplicity, split loyalties and moral quandaries. Director Wise does a good job of pacing the film, keeping it on the slow burn whilst dialling into Jim Garry's mindset, and picture is further boosted by a great knuckle fight and a rip-roaring siege shoot out at the end. But it's the mood created by Musuraca and Wise that is the real winner. With the film set 90% at night or in darkened rooms, shadow play is high and an oppressive feel adds weight to the psychological clocks ticking away in the narrative. In support of Mitchum, Geddes does spunky cowgirl well, while the presence of Brennan, Faylen and the gravel voiced McGraw is keenly felt.

Good story, well acted and visually potent. 7/10


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