Friday, January 26, 2007

Tonight's Movie: Man With the Gun (1955)

MAN WITH THE GUN is a fairly entertaining Western starring Robert Mitchum as Clint Tollinger, a "town tamer" hired to clean up Sheridan City. It just so happens Tollinger's estranged wife (Jan Sterling) is also in Sheridan City, where she is a "businesswoman" who houses and supplies dance hall girls to the local saloon.

Mitchum is always compelling; it's enjoyable watching his strategies to clean up the town. The personal storyline, with Sterling as the cold, bitter woman from Mitchum's past, is less interesting, and even somewhat distasteful given her new career. The resolution to their relationship at the end of the film was a bit abrupt.

The movie has a good supporting cast, including Barbara Lawrence and Angie Dickinson as the dance hall girls and Claude Akins and Leo Gordon as bad guys.

It was filmed in black and white and runs 83 minutes. It was the first film directed by Richard Wilson, who had a fairly short career as a director. Wilson had a varied career including bit acting parts and serving as Orson Welles' assistant on CITIZEN KANE and THE MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS.

MAN WITH THE GUN is available on VHS.


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