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Heaven with a Gun (1969)

Passed | | Drama, Western | 13 June 1969 (USA)
In a frontier town, gunslinger-turned-preacher Jim Killian is caught in the middle of a violent range war between cattlemen and sheep-men.


Lee H. Katzin


Richard Carr




Cast overview, first billed only:
Glenn Ford ... Jim Killian / Pastor Jim
Carolyn Jones ... Madge McCloud
Barbara Hershey ... Leloopa
John Anderson ... Asa Beck
David Carradine ... Coke Beck
J.D. Cannon ... Mace
Noah Beery Jr. ... Garvey
Harry Townes ... Gus Sampson
William Bryant ... Bart Paterson (as Bill Bryant)
Virginia Gregg ... Mrs. Patterson
James Griffith ... Abraham Murdock
Roger Perry ... Ned Hunter
Claude Woolman ... Gilcher
Ed Bakey Ed Bakey ... Scotty Andrews
Barbara Babcock ... Mrs. Andrews


In the small western town Vinegarroon the conflict between cattle and sheep breeders escalates. When a stranger appears in the town, the ranchers suspect he's a gun man, hired by the sheep breeders. But Jim Killian turns out to be a priest - a tough one however, who soon shall make unscrupulous rancher Esa Beck's life quite harder. Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Jim Killian Killed Like an Artist. This is the Story of His Masterpiece See more »


Drama | Western


Passed | See all certifications »

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Did You Know?


Dalton Trumbo first contributed to this script in the early 1960s but asked for it to be removed from the credits once the blacklist had been lifted. See more »


Jim Killian: Madge, is there a doctor in this town?
Madge McCloud: One of the best
Jim Killian: Fine, alright I'll repeat; I'm you're preacher. I will protect anyone who comes around this church. I'd try to understand that, if I were you
[exchange of gunfire]
Jim Killian: Well, you'd better get a doctor, Madge. And the rest of you, there'll be no killing around this church unless I do the killing. Amen.
See more »


Referenced in Dad Made Dirty Movies (2011) See more »


A Lonley Place
Lyrics by Paul Francis Webster
Music by Johnny Mandel
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User Reviews

1 November 2014 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Known gunfighter Glenn Ford arrives in the town of Vinegarroon a name made famous as the seat of Judge Roy Bean's court. But here the local power is the local Ponderosa owner John Anderson and his punk of a son David Carradine. Some sheepman have been intruding on government range and Anderson isn't having any.

When Ford comes to town he takes a lease on an old barn and then reveals he's now a minister as well, but ready to back his sermons with gunfire if necessary. He tries to bring peace to the cattlemen and the sheepmen. His main allies though are the women of the locale.

Two women prominently figure in this film. One is Carolyn Jones who runs the local watering hole. In keeping with the times the film is quite specific about what the women are there for. Jones and Ford have history. Looking to make some history with Ford is Barbara Hershey who is a young Indian girl he rescues. Also in keeping with the abolition of the Code is one brutal rape scene involving her and her real life husband David Carradine.

Despite the sexual frankness Heaven With A Gun has an old fashioned look to it. It's not in the same league as some of Ford's earlier westerns like 3:10 To Yuma, Jubal, or The Violent Men. But his fans should be pleased.

The climax is borrowed some from Destry Rides Again and some from Duel In The Sun.

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Release Date:

13 June 1969 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Heaven with a Gun See more »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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