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Welcome to Hard Times (1967)

Approved | | Drama, Western | June 1967 (Austria)
2:56 | Trailer
A sociopathic stranger all but destroys a small hardscrabble town but the 'mayor' convinces its survivors to stay and rebuild.


Burt Kennedy


E.L. Doctorow (novel), Burt Kennedy





Cast overview, first billed only:
Henry Fonda ... Mayor Will Blue
Janice Rule ... Molly Riordan
Keenan Wynn ... Zar
Janis Paige ... Adah
John Anderson ... Ezra Maple / Isaac Maple
Warren Oates ... Leo Jenks
Fay Spain ... Jessie
Edgar Buchanan ... Brown
Aldo Ray ... Man from Bodie
Denver Pyle ... Alfie - Stage Driver
Michael Shea Michael Shea ... Jimmy Fee
Arlene Golonka ... Mae
Lon Chaney Jr. ... Avery (as Lon Chaney)
Royal Dano ... John Bear
Alan Baxter ... Jack Millay


In the town of Hard Times, a stranger rides in and terrorizes the small settlement. He kills a number of townsfolk, including Fee, the town's founder. Mayor Will Blue fails to stand up to the man, who rapes saloon whore Molly and burns down the town. Blue promises to rebuild the town after the stranger rides on, but the townsfolk give up and leave. A wagon load of prostitutes led by "entrepeneur" Zar shows up and together with Blue, they rebuild the town. But Molly's desire for revenge and her anger at Blue for not protecting her eat at her, and Blue promises that things will be different when the stranger returns. And return he does. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A town can be killed by a bullet...just like a man! See more »


Drama | Western


Approved | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


This was originally announced for Gregory Peck and Rita Hayworth in 1965. See more »


Mayor Blue points (to Zar) to the miners riding into town and lowers his arm. The shot moves to one from behind Blue to his left & his arm is still pointing (& again lowers it). See more »


Molly Riordan: Were you any good with a gun, you might teach the lad a little manliness.
Mayor Will Blue: That's not manliness.
Molly Riordan: How would you know? How would you know anything about bein' a man?
See more »


Silent Night
Composed by Franz Xaver Gruber (1859)
Played at Christmastime in tent bar.
See more »

User Reviews

One Man Destroys a Town
16 October 2007 | by whpratt1See all my reviews

This is a great Henry Fonda film from 1967 where Fonda plays the role as Mayor Will Blue who is a peace abiding man and hates to use his fists or a weapon against anyone. One day a man visits his town and takes over the entire town, raping women and burning the entire town to the ground. Mayor Will Blue is not very well liked by his town folk, however, he still wants to remain in what is left of his town and refuses to runaway like he has done in his past life. Molly Riordan,(Janice Rule) becomes rather close to Will Blue and also Keenan Wynn, (Zar, Whiskey & Girls) visits the town and opens up a Saloon for prostitutes and booze. Lon Chaney Jr. and Elisha Cook Jr., "I Wake Up Screaming" make very brief appearances in this film but give great supporting roles. This is a great Henry Fonda film which he made when he reached the age of 60 years and was beginning to find very few roles on the Silver Screen and then decided to perform on the Broadway Stage in New York City. Enjoy.

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Release Date:

June 1967 (Austria) See more »

Also Known As:

Welcome to Hard Times See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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