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: Rimfire (1949)  ( 358 )

« : October 26, 2017, 04:43:36 AM »

The Ghost of the Abilene Kid.

Rimfire is directed by B. Reeves Eason and jointly written by Ron Ormond, Arthur St. Claire and Frank Wisbar. It stars James Millican, Reed Hadley, Mary Beth Hughes, Henry Hull, Fuzzy Knight and Victor Killian. Music is by Walter Greene and cinematography by Ernest Miller.

Captain Tom Harvey (Millican) is an undercover army officer working in a small Texas town investigating the theft of army gold shipments. Taking on the role of a deputy, he suddenly finds the town gripped by terror as they believe the ghost of a gambler who was wrongly convicted and hanged has come back from the grave to enact revenge.

"Gold and greed, it seems, go together. And so do. So do gold and death"

Clocking in at just over an hour, Rimfire is compact and unfussily directed for maximum impact. There's a slight irk that once the central hanging and conviction enters the story, the film barely has time to unfold the mystery element, in fact so much is crammed into the final twenty minutes you really can't afford to look away. But why would you look away when the film is so interesting in narrative and so visually arresting? The biggest character in the piece is Ernest Miller's black and white photography, low-key lighting with prominent shadows, there's a pessimistic ambiance given the production, a sense that humanity is rotten. Which when coupled with the unusual aspects of the story make this very much a unique Western of the 40s.

Well performed with the likes of Hadley, Hull and Millican turning in professional shows, and with super work from photographer Miller, this rounds out as very much a Western noir worth checking out. 7.5/10

Kit Parker Double DVD - Western Film Noir -

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