(director: Allan Dwan; screenwriter: Steve Fisher; cinematographer: John W. Boyle; editor: Merrill White ; music: Edward Alperson, Jr.; cast: Scott Brady (Mitch Baker), Anne Bancroft (Angelita), Jay C. Flippen (Marshal Evans), Jim Davis (Ed Newton), Rhys Williams (Reverend Simmons), Leo Gordon (Cherokee); Runtime: 86; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Edward Alperson; (20th Century-Fox); 1957)

“Gets elevated by Dwan’s crafty direction.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

The prolific filmmaker Allan Dwan(“Slightly Scarlet”/”Sands of Iwo Jima”/”Robin Hood”), the inventor of the dolly shot in 1915, made his last western, a low-budget one while in his 70s. The standard revenge story scripted by Steve Fisher gets elevated by Dwan’s crafty direction and his uncanny ability to bring out comic moments from this dour western. The music is supplied by the producer’s son, Edward Alperson, Jr..

Mitch (Scott Brady) is the educated son of a secret service agent slain in the lawless Mexican border town of Mission, in 1865, who vows to avenge his death. The hot-headed Mitch is offered no help in his mission by the law of the town when he arrives in town to ask for justice. Though he impresses the marshal (Jay C Flippen) and is appointed deputy, after he guns down two gunslingers (Leo Gordon & Scott Marlowe). That doesn’t sit well with the preacher (Rhys Williams) who befriended him and preaches non-violence. The preacher is the guardian of the sexy halfbreed Angelita (Anne Bancroft), someone Mitch has his eyes on.

Newton (Jim Davis) is the outlaw leader of gun-runners for the Mexican revolution, who murdered Mitch’s father. He finally must meet Mitch in a showdown when his cronies fail to kill the persistent revenge-minded young man.

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