Luke Ram seeks revenge against the white renegade who lead a Sioux raiding party against his father's stagecoach way station, killing all the inhabitants except himself. He's joined by his ...
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Luke Ram seeks revenge against the white renegade who lead a Sioux raiding party against his father's stagecoach way station, killing all the inhabitants except himself. He's joined by his mining partner, young Sam Weller, not realizing that they man they seek is Weller's father, in whose gang Sam rode as a young man.Written by
Gun Fever is a good example of the sort of very low budget western that was once a Hollywood staple from late in the era when going to the movies for many Americans meant going to see a western. By the time the picture came out (1958) television, with its literally dozens of western series had largely replaced movies as the primary source of filmed westerns except at the A and very high budget level.
Cheap as it is, this movie shows some directorial flair and, aside from Larry Storch's terrible performance as a Mexican, it's not badly acted. As to the story, it's scarcely worth mentioning except to say that it falls into the category of what can best be described as the revenge western. Directed by and starring Mark Stevens, ex-second tier leading man, now third tier and fading fast, it moves quickly and, depending on the point of view, either benefits or is hampered by the use of wind machines, as this is one windy movie.
If the reason for this is mentioned in the film at some point I must have missed it. Maybe there are parts of the west that experience windy seasons, just as there are rainy seasons, dry seasons and so forth. Gun Fever takes place where it appears to be windy season all the time. This enabled Stevens and his crew to disguise, as best they could, the movie's cheapness. I think it works even as I admit that it's a gimmick.
The notion that just being outdoors is or can be dangerous in and of itself is nicely driven home in the movie even as it doesn't appear to be its theme, such as it has one. It's never comfortable for the characters in the picture to be outside for any length of time due to all the blowing dirt, sand and leaves. I wouldn't go so far to say that isolation is a theme in the film but rather a consequence of the way it was made. This is a movie to experience, not ponder.
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