6.3/10
209
7 user 5 critic

A Covenant with Death (1967)

A convicted murderer kills his hangman. Then it is discovered that he actually didn't commit the murder he was convicted for.

Director:

Lamont Johnson

Writers:

Stephen Becker (novel), Saul Levitt | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
George Maharis ... Ben Lewis
Laura Devon ... Rosemary
Katy Jurado ... Eulalia Lewis
Earl Holliman ... Brian Talbot
Arthur O'Connell ... Judge Hockstadter
Sidney Blackmer ... Col. Oates
Gene Hackman ... Harmsworth
John Anderson ... Dietrich
Wende Wagner ... Rafaela Montemayor
Emilio Fernández ... Igancio
Kent Smith ... Parmalee
Lonny Chapman ... Musgrave
Jose De Vega ... Digby
Larry D. Mann ... Chillingworth
Whit Bissell ... Bruce Donnelly
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Storyline

A handsome Latino judge in a USA border town in the 1920s navigates two different cultures, not quite fitting into either, while trying to woo two different women in unconventional ways for either culture, to oversee an execution and, later, to officiate a murder trial.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

based on novel | See All (1) »

Taglines:

The bristling best seller comes to angry life. See more »

Genres:

Drama

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

23 January 1969 (Mexico) See more »

Also Known As:

Un pacto con la muerte See more »

Filming Locations:

Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Feature directorial debut of Lamont Johnson. See more »

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User Reviews

 
The summary on IMDb seems to say too much...and not quite enough either.
19 September 2016 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

Normally, I don't complain but the summary on IMDb for this film is pretty bad. First, it discloses a BIG plot twist. Second, it really doesn't explain what the movie really is all about as well. Sure, there is a murder and execution...but it's all through the eyes of a young Hispanic judge (George Maharis) and there's no mention of him or how he relates to all this.

The story actually is a bit dispassionate...or should I say the first portion. Ben (Maharis) observes what's going on but seems surprisingly impassive about it. Later, however, when the case is surprisingly dropped into his lap, he has to become involved and make a decision based not just on law but common sense as it's really hard at this point to find a precedent for what happens.

Aside from the poor decision to cast Maharis (he's a handsome guy but hardly seems Hispanic), the film is an interesting look at justice and kept my interest. Worth seeing.


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