Thursday, February 19, 2015


A disentranced gunfighter ambles into the Wyoming homestead of a floundering rancher and his wife in the hopes of starting a new life, and is immediately idolized by the couple's young child. Though eventually trusted by the family and desperately heeding to their advice to avoid the ever beckoning calls of his past life, fate draws him into a showdown with the ruthless cattle baron who has been preying upon his new keepers' land. George Stevens' classic Western standard, from the book by Jack Schaefer, is a perfectly satisfying (and realized) example of hokey Americana. Loyal Griggs' awe inspiring cinematography dominates the proceedings and each and every player, including Alan Ladd as the weary gunslinger, Brandon de Wilde as his young devotee, Van Heflin playing the struggling rancher, Jean Arthur his wife, Ben Johnson as a despicable thug, and Jack Palance as the vile black hat, are cast and play their roles to a T.
**** out of ****