(director: Richard Fleischer; screenwriter: Earl Felton; cinematographer: Ernest Laszlo; editor: Robert Golden; music: Max Steiner; cast: Robert Mitchum (Wilson), Ursula Thiess (Lisa Kennedy), Gilbert Roland (Col. Escobar), Zachary Scott (Kennedy), Rodolfo Acosta (Sebastian), Jose Torvay (Gonzalez), Douglas Fowley (McGhee), Henry Brandon (Gunther); Runtime: 92; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Robert L. Jacks; United Artist; 1956)
“Routine adventure story filmed in Mexico by director Richard Fleischer.”
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
Routine adventure story filmed in Mexico by director Richard Fleischer(“Mandingo”/”Red Sonja“/”The Boston Strangler”), whose virile direction keeps the action coming fast enough to cover up the lackluster narrative. The script is by its story writer Earl Felton, whose attempt at tongue-in-cheek humor never materializes.
The laid back Robert Mitchum plays the super cool Wilson, the American soldier of fortune, who gets involved in gun-running during the Mexican Revolution of 1916 by helping the rebel leader Escobar (Gilbert Roland) and surviving by playing both sides. Also crossing the border into Mexico is the mercenary’s fellow Americans, Kennedy (Zachary Scott) and his gorgeous wife Lisa (Ursula Thiess), but Kennedy sides with the ruling class.
Nothing here for the war-loving opportunistic Mitchum to lose but his Panama hat, but it’s still fun watching Mitchum and Roland do their macho thing and to catch Ursula’s last acting performance (she retired after marrying Robert Taylor).
REVIEWED ON 8/18/2014 GRADE: B-