Sunday, July 2, 2017

Gun the Man Down (1956)

Director: Andrew V. McLaglen

Writers: Sam Freedle, Burt Kennedy

Composer: Henry Vars

Starring: James Arness, Emile Meyer, Robert J. Wilke, Harry Carey Jr., Don Megowan, Michael Emmet, Pedro Gonzalez Gonzalez, Angie Dickinson

More info: IMDb

Tagline: Here Come the Gunslingers! Lightning on the draw...Deadly in their aim...Goaded on to

Plot: Two bank robbers abandon their wounded partner to the posse and run with the loot but their partner, after serving time in prison, seeks revenge.

My rating:  6/10

Will I watch it again?  No

Here's an OK Western that delivers good performances and a professional look.  There's nothing special about it as a film as it's well made but with a story that feels by the numbers.  But then it's what's not on screen that makes this a curiosity.  Angie Dickenson made her film debut with this and another film that came out a month earlier.  It's McLaglen's first movie, too, and he went on to direct a lot of great action films over the next 3 decades.  Then there's the tidbit that it was because of this film (produced by John Wayne's brother) that John Wayne recommended Arness for GUNSMOKE which Arness starred for the next 20 years!  There's some more neat trivia on the IMDb page.  Back to the film, the only scene that stood out was where Billy takes the $5k offer to kill Rem (Arness) and immediately walks outside the saloon to search the town for him.  There's barely any dialogue for a couple of minutes and only music but Billy is steely-eyed and all business and it's a great little sequence.  It's a relatively short film at few minutes under 80 so if you're looking for a Western to relax and kill some time with, this won't do you any harm.

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