- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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Great script about the meaning of herioism
- Dan Madigan
A super cast all involved in Villa's Rev. in Mexico. Roland is the true revolutionary, no material wants or needs, Spartan; Calhoun is a mercenary, Shelley Winters, a teacher of neglected Indians. All get caught up in bringing gold to Villia. A train carrying gold i s held up, Calhoun has a made over rifle that must be the first machine gun ever..excellent prop, and the photography of the train wreckis fabulous... the number dead is astounding, and the reactions are various as many pro Villla men have second thoughts about continuing with Roland and Calhoun. The gold is central, as a symbol of power and all are tempted, but heroism is defind by the ultimnate need, the need to be sure. secure, unafraid of death and disease, wanting structure and willing to die for freedom in order to secure the better life, higer vibration life, for others. The script examines all of this, and what a conclusion this film has.Photography outstanding as well as the direction. The acting superb, especially Calhoun and Roland...you never really know..Winters is always great. See this and I hope it gets out on DVD soon. Another hit from RKO, the really first independent film co.
Rory Calhoun---you've got to be kidding!
This guy never made a good movie ---ever!
Little Hidden Movie Treasure
- Martin Sutton
Rory Calhoun is Tom Bryan, a mercenary who takes advantage of the Mexican civil war to line his own pockets. Joining the revolutionary forces of Colonel Juan Castro (a relative of Fidel?), he helps steal a cache of gold which they are transporting to their leader Pancho Villa, to finance the cause.Three things distinguish this little known movie. Firstly, filmed on location in Mexico the screen is saturated with the glowing colours of the landscape and towns. And secondly, Shelley Winters, as the left-wing school teacher Ruth Harris, brings an unexpected touch of women's lib to a traditionally male-dominated genre. And lastly, but most important, this is a very bleakly cynical story. Tom Bryan, the story's central character, while seeming to support his colonel's political ideals, turns against him to keep the gold for himself. Not so much a hero as an anti-hero. But in the end he and the colonel must unite to fight off the Mexican army. The sacks of gold now become a barricade behind which they shelter, the coins spilling out as the army's bullets strike them. Bryan has also set a dynamite charge to kill the troops, but it's force brings down a cliff which buries the gold. The colonel is shot and Bryan buries him, using the cruciform handle of dynamite charger as a cross. This is pretty grim imagery, but it's not over. Bryan wanders off by himself into the desert. A very brave conclusion for a Fifties western!