6.2/10
170
9 user 6 critic

Showdown at Abilene (1956)

Approved | | Romance, Western | 24 December 1956 (UK)
After the Civil War, Confederate Jim Trask returns to his native Abilene to find his sweetheart engaged to his old friend Dave Mosely who's leading the cattlemen in a feud against the farmers.

Director:

(as Charles Haas)

Writers:

(screenplay), (story)
Reviews

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Red Sundown (1956)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A gunfighter takes a deputy sheriff job in a town caught in a feud between a powerful rancher and small farmers.

Director: Jack Arnold
Stars: Rory Calhoun, Martha Hyer, Dean Jagger
Joe Dakota (1957)
Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A stranger rides into town and says he is looking for a local Indian. Told he left town, the truth everyone has been hiding comes out including the stranger's true identity.

Director: Richard Bartlett
Stars: Jock Mahoney, Luana Patten, Charles McGraw
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  

At Apache River Station, the passengers of a stagecoach, the owners of the station, a sheriff and his prisoner and a few ferry passengers are besieged by a band of renegade Apaches.

Director: Lee Sholem
Stars: Stephen McNally, Julie Adams, Hugh Marlowe
Reprisal! (1956)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Half-breed Frank Madden claims he's White, in order to own land, but violent racial clashes in town force him to abandon his neutrality and chose a side.

Director: George Sherman
Stars: Guy Madison, Felicia Farr, Kathryn Grant
Relentless (1948)
Certificate: Passed Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Framed for a murder he didn't commit, a cowboy must stay one step ahead of the law as he hunts for the real killer.

Director: George Sherman
Stars: Robert Young, Marguerite Chapman, Willard Parker
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  

Cavalry Captain Farraday attempts to prevent the delivery of Gatling Guns into the hands of hostile Indians.

Director: Rudolph Maté
Stars: Van Johnson, Joanne Dru, Richard Boone
Mystery | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

After a gold prospector is killed by masked robbers, a detective is hired to find the surviving killer as well as the prospector's legal inheritors.

Director: Richard Bartlett
Stars: Jock Mahoney, Kim Hunter, Tim Hovey
Comedy | Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

John Ford weaves three "Judge Priest" stories together to form a good- natured exploration of honour and small-town politics in the South around the turn of the century. Judge William ... See full summary »

Director: John Ford
Stars: Charles Winninger, Arleen Whelan, John Russell
The Intruders (TV Movie 1970)
Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

The James and Younger outlaw gangs ride into town, and it is up to the local marshal, who has lost both his nerve and his gun skills, to stop them.

Director: William A. Graham
Stars: Don Murray, Anne Francis, Edmond O'Brien
Romance | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Gunfighter Brett Wade, diagnosed with tuberculosis, tries to get out of his former life while helping a young woman.

Director: George Sherman
Stars: Rory Calhoun, Piper Laurie, David Brian
Adventure | Drama | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Wagon train survivors of an Apache attack entrust the sheriff's prisoner, scout Comanche Todd, with their lives despite his wanted-for-murder status.

Director: Delmer Daves
Stars: Richard Widmark, Felicia Farr, Susan Kohner
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

An immigrant Nevada rancher brings a woman from Italy to be his second wife but when he neglects her, she becomes involved with his trusted assistant. Nominated for 3 Academy Awards including Best Actor.

Director: George Cukor
Stars: Anthony Quinn, Anna Magnani, Anthony Franciosa
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Dave Mosely
...
...
...
Dan Claudius
...
Ross Bigelow (as Harry Harvey Sr.)
Dayton Lummis ...
Jack Bedford
...
Nelson
...
Sprague (as Robert G. Anderson)
...
Frank Scovie
...
Loop
Edit

Storyline

Jim Trask, former sheriff of Abilene, returns to the town after fighting for the Confederacy to find everyone thought he was dead. His old friend Dave Mosely is now engaged to Trask's former sweetheart and is one of the cattlemen increasingly feuding with the original farmers. Trask is persuaded to take up as sheriff again but there is something about the death of Mosely's brother in the Civil War that is haunting him. Written by Jeremy Perkins <jwp@aber.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THE BLAZING STORY OF THE GREAT ABILENE RANGE WAR! (original print ad - all caps)

Genres:

Romance | Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

24 December 1956 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Gun Shy  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

In a 2007 interview, director Charles Haas talked about helping Jock Mahoney, the star of this film, not be upstaged by a young David Janssen, whose gifts he recognized. "In a picture at Universal [Showdown at Abilene], I had David Janssen. I had him with [Jock Mahoney], who . . . was basically a stuntman. Stunts were easy for him, but as an actor he lacked a certain energy. So I couldn't afford to have David Janssen as his assistant, but he was under contract at Universal, and I had to [use] him. So I had him leaning against a door in every scene. He never understood why. The reason was, if I hadn't had him leaning against a door in every scene that he was in, he would've outdone [Mahoney], who was the star." See more »

Quotes

Verne Ward: You know the trouble with this business is it makes a man old before his time. You know I never did hear of a sheriff living to be a ripe old age, did you?
Jim Trask: Sure. Ed Murdock. They didn't shoot him until he was 38.
Verne Ward: Probably lied about his age.
See more »

Connections

Remade as Gunfight in Abilene (1967) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Tried and trusted formula makes for easy viewing.
5 January 2012 | by See all my reviews

Showdown at Abilene is directed by Charles Hass and written by Bernie Giler and Clarence Upson Young. It stars Jock Mahoney, Martha Hyler, Lyle Bettger and David Janssen. Music is by Joseph Gershenson and photography by Irving Glassberg.

Plot has Mahoney as Jim Trask, a former Sheriff of Abilene who returns home from the Civil War with a guilty conscience and a new contempt for guns. Compounding his troubles is that his old friend Dave Mosely (Bettger) has taken up a romantic relationship with his girl, Peggy Bigelow (Hyer), and he soon learns that Dave is also into villainous activities. Can Trask overcome his troubles and restore order to Abilene and his life?

Better than average and competently acted, Showdown at Abilene is a solid time filler for the undemanding Western fan. Although thoughtful in its treatment of the characters, formula dictates there are no surprises and comparisons are easily drawn to better Westerns with the same thematics. Mahoney (TV series The Range Rider) turns in a good show as the emotionally perturbed Trask, while as a stuntman by trade he isn't found lacking in the physical demands of the role as he leaps around with exciting conviction. Hyer (The Sons of Katie Elder) is pretty as a picture as serves the story well as a rose between two thorns, while Bettger (Gunfight at the O.K. Corral) scores favourably as the crafty Dave Mosely. Not faring so well is Ted de Corsa (also Gunfight at the O.K. Corral) as Dan Claudius, who looks (and is) wrong for prime villain duties. Shot primarily out of Morrison Ranch, Agoura in California, picture sadly is lifeless in colour, so we never get to see the locale and costuming come to life. Producer Howard Christie liked the story so much he re-made it eleven years later as 'Gunfight in Abilene', where Bobby Darin starred as the conflicted lead character.

Nothing overtly impressive here, nor anything particularly damning either. Just safe and solid B Western viewing. 6/10


3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 9 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial