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Valdez Is Coming (1971)

PG-13 | | Western | 9 April 1971 (USA)
A Mexican-American sheriff must resort to violence against a powerful rancher in order to get just compensation for the pregnant Indian widow of a wrongly killed black man.

Director:

Edwin Sherin

Writers:

Roland Kibbee (screenplay), David Rayfiel (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Burt Lancaster ... Valdez
Susan Clark ... Gay Erin
Frank Silvera ... Diego
Jon Cypher ... Frank Tanner
Richard Jordan ... R. L. Davis
Barton Heyman ... El Segundo
Hector Elizondo ... Mexican Rider
Phil Brown ... Malson
Ralph Brown Ralph Brown ... Beaudry
Werner Hasselmann ... Sheriff (as Werner Hassleman)
Lex Monson Lex Monson ... Rincon
Sylvia Poggioli Sylvia Poggioli ... Segundo's Girl (as Sylvia Paggioli)
José García García José García García ... Carlos (as Jose Garcia Garcia)
María Montez María Montez ... Anita (as Maria Montez)
Juanita Penaloza Juanita Penaloza ... Indian Woman
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Storyline

The town constable, Bob Valdez, is forced to kill someone accused by Frank Tanner of being a murderer. Valdez asks Tanner for monetary help for the man's wife, but he is ridiculed and almost killed by Tanner's henchmen. Valdez recovers and summons up his days in the U.S. Cavalry in order to fight them. Valdez wounds one of the henchmen and sends him back to Tanner with the message, "Valdez is coming." Written by Robbie Burns <burnodo@usit.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Honor is Always Worth Fighting For. See more »

Genres:

Western

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence, brief nudity and some language | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA | Spain

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

9 April 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Valdez See more »

Filming Locations:

Bavispe, Sonora, Mexico See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Feature film debuts of Jon Cypher and Richard Jordan. See more »

Goofs

In the picture of Valdez, taken when he was an Army Scout, he had Sergeant stripes on his shirt. Later, when he wore the shirt, there were no stripes. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Frank Tanner: I shoulda killed you three days ago.
El Segundo: Or gone to Nogales.
Bob Valdez: Or paid the hundred dollars.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The UK DVD has at least one horse tripping edited. Towards the end Valdez and the lady ride at each other, the horses clashing and falling. This scene is missing in the UK version, you see them riding towards each other and suddenly they are down on the ground, rising up. The German version is uncut. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Minnie and Moskowitz (1971) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Talk softly and carry a big gun -- a really big gun!
22 May 2007 | by RJBurke1942See all my reviews

Life's full of coincidence, no? This is true: just a few weeks back, I happened to pick up another novel from Elmore Leonard called 'Valdez is coming'. After reading it, I said to a close friend, 'Hey, this is a great story – and it'd be another great movie..." So, when he told me it already was, I just had to get it and have a look.

Leonard is prolific: not only one of America's premier authors, he's responsible for some of the most talked about films ever, among them being Get Shorty (1995), Mr. Majestyk (1974 ), Jackie Brown (1997 ), Pronto (1997 ) and many others. So, when you get wind of another one from this master storyteller, you sit up and take notice.

Leonard's heroes tend to fall into two camps: the tough guy who's got heart when needed, or the guy with heart who gets tough when pushed. In both cases, you get a character who's the type of guy you'd always like to have as a friend, but never as an enemy...

Bob Valdez (Lancaster) is the local constable who gets caught up in a stand-off between an alleged killer and a vigilante posse led by Frank Tanner (Jon Cypher). After being forced to kill the accused murderer, Valdez tries unsuccessfully to persuade the towns' leaders and Tanner to kick in some compensation for the man's Apache widow. They refuse, of course, and, in the process of asking Tanner again, Valdez is cruelly treated: Tanner orders his men to tie a wooden cross to Valdez's back and then forces him to walk back to town – some fifteen miles.

Unhappily for Tanner, he picked the wrong guy to bully: Valdez is a retired scout and Indian fighter who knows how to exact revenge. He returns to Tanner's spread and kidnaps his girl friend, thus forcing Tanner to pursue both of them into the high sierra – the very place that Valdez knows better than anybody. That sets up the final confrontation between the two men, but preceded by Valdez picking off eleven of Tanner's men with better tactics and better firepower. And, for a western, the final scene is unique: you'll never see another western with an end like it. Bar none...

Filmed in Spain, up in the sierra, the cold terrain and air are overwhelming, almost. The music sound track is adequate and doesn't intrude as others have; the editing is just a tad too quick in a couple a places, but the photography is just stunning. Lancaster gives a solid performance as the Mexican constable, with just the right amount of lilt to his affected Mexican-English, and his tacit subservience to the bullying Americans; Cypher is excellent as the cruel and near-sociopathic trail boss and landowner; Susan Clark is competent, but not outstanding, as the kidnapped girlfriend; and a special mention for Barton Heyman as El Segundo who finally learns what true loyalty means. In sum, a stellar cast for a well-produced and very intelligent western.

If you like the western genre, in my opinion this one ranks in the top ten for that genre. So, if you haven't seen it yet, I give this one my highest recommendation.


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