59 user 3 critic

Purgatory (1999)

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An outlaw band rides into a town that is actually Purgatory, between Heaven and Hell.


Uli Edel


Gordon T. Dawson (as Gordon Dawson)
Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 2 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Sam Shepard ... Sheriff Forrest / Wild Bill Hickock
Eric Roberts ... Blackjack Britton
Randy Quaid ... Doc Woods / Doc Holliday
Peter Stormare ... Cavin Guthrie
Brad Rowe ... Leo 'Sonny' Dillard
Donnie Wahlberg ... Deputy Glen / Billy The Kid
JD Souther ... Brooks / Jesse James (as John David Souther)
Amelia Heinle ... Rose / Betty McCullough
Shannon Kenny ... Dolly Sloan / Ivy
John Dennis Johnston ... Lamb / 'Lefty' Slade
Saginaw Grant ... Gatekeeper
Richard Edson ... Euripides
Gregory Scott Cummins ... Knox
John Diehl ... Badger
R.G. Armstrong ... Coachman


An outlaw band flees a posse and rides into Refuge, a small town where no one carries a gun, drinks, or swears. The town is actually Purgatory, and the peaceful inhabitants are all famous dead outlaws and criminals such as Doc Holiday and Wild Bill Hickok who must redeem themselves before gaining admittance to Heaven...or screw up and go to Hell. The residents must either defend themselves against the outlaws and risk eternal damnation... or die a second time. Written by <crow_steve@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Fantasy | Western


TV-14 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »


Official Sites:

TNT [United States]





Release Date:

10 January 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Purgatory West of the Pecos See more »

Filming Locations:

Barstow, California, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Rosemont Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs




Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


All of the Purgatory residents' assumed names are nature-based: Forest, Glen, Ivy, Rose, Woods, Lamb. See more »


In Purgatory, the people must live in peace for 10 years before being accepted into heaven. However, Wild Bill Hickok died in 1876 and Doc Holliday died in 1887, 11 years later. According to the movie's plot, they could not have been in purgatory together. Unless, Wild Bill Hickok found it hard to live in peace which would keep starting his time over and therefore placing him with Doc Holiday. This problem with living in peace could explain a lot of plot holes reasonably. See more »


Coachman: Climb aboard, Sonny.
Leo "Sonny" Dillard: [Looks at Rose] Do I have to?
Coachman: You got nothing left to prove.
Leo "Sonny" Dillard: I want to stay.
Forest: Refuge is a place of hard rules, Sonny.
Leo "Sonny" Dillard: I know what it is. I think I'm going to make it.
Coachman: [to Sonny after Forest pinned the Sherriff badge on Sonny and climbed onto the stagecoach] Your seat'll be here when you want it.
See more »

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User Reviews

I don't like westerns but i liked this
16 July 2006 | by vampiresanSee all my reviews

This was a really satisfying story with great performances from the actors, even Eric Roberts who usually annoys me.

The basic story is that a band of outlaws heading for Mexico get waylaid in a town called refuge where no pone carries a gun and everyone welcomes them with open arms. But like the rattlesnakes they are, instead of accepting and appreciating this hospitality the outlaws decide to take the town for all it's worth not realising exactly what kind of place they have ridden into.

This film is exactly the type of thing you get when an interesting premise is properly executed. A real treat that I only found by accident on late night TV!

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