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Author Topic: Day of the Outlaw (1959)  (Read 10552 times)
moviesceleton
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« on: October 29, 2007, 08:55:26 AM »

Director:   André De Toth
Writers:    Lee Wells (novel)
                 Philip Yordan (screenplay)
Producer:  Sidney Harmon
Composer:Alexander Courage
Cast:         Robert Ryan ...  Blaise Starrett
                 Burl Ives ...  Jack Bruhn
                 Tina Louise ...  Helen Crane
                 Alan Marshal ...  Hal Crane
                 Venetia Stevenson ...  Ernine, Vic's Daughter
                 David Nelson ...  Gene, Bruhn's Gang

A gang of outlaws, lead by Jack Bruhn (Ives), arrives to a small town in the mountains interrupting a showdown between Blaise Starrett (Ryan) and Hal Crane (Marshal). If you want know of the plot, watch the movie Cool

The pace is rather slow but the movie feels dragging only at few points. Directing doesn't attract attention but the main thing is that it works. Acting is good. The real strenghts are the screenplay, the environment and the score. Even though I'm no western expert, I can say the story is not the usual one (at least the solution is not). Plus none of the characters are purely good or evil. The movie is set in a town surrounded by snowcovered mountains and it looks like they shot all the outdoor scenes were shot on-location.

Overall a very good movie even though I know certain members would call it boring

8/10

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« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2007, 10:24:41 AM »

thanks for the review, never seen this one.

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« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2007, 08:01:51 PM »

  I've never even heard of this one, but it sounds interesting.  Almost like Vera Cruz is to the Dollars trilogy, Day of the Outlaw is to The Great Silence.  Well kinda.  Grin

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« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2008, 09:27:58 PM »

Wow Wow Wow!!!

Ok here is another Western that has dropped off the radar screen that is not only a very good Western but it is a the source of quotes that show up in Corbucci's "The Great Silence", in "Firecreek" and it in a way it also references "Shane".

I'll give a quick synopsis:

Directed by Andre' de Toth it stars Robert Ryan, Burl Ives, and Tina Louise (yes that Tina Louise "The Movie Star" from Gilligan's Island).  Anyway it begins with rancher Starrett (Ryan) & his foreman Dan (Persoff)  bucking their horses through heavy snow as the titles roll across the screen.  They stop outside of a small town at a wagon filled with rolls of barbed wire. Ryan is going to have a confrontation with farmer Hal Crane who has fenced off some choice land for a farmstead. Ryan is also in love with Crane's wife (Louise). After a period of time where we learn of all these various triangles the confrontation comes at the only saloon in town. Starrett faces off against Crane and three other farmers. Dan the foreman is drunk but Starrett tells him to roll an empty booze bottle down the bar and to draw when it falls off.

Up to this point this film seems like a typical Western and you think you know where its going.

Before the bottle reaches the end of the bar in through the saloon door bursts a deranged Bruhn (Ives) dressed as a Union Officer with great coat, hat, and belts, along with his crazed gang of loonies with guns drawn who have just made it through a mountian pass after robbing 18,000 dollars. The gang gathers all the townsfolk together as hostages. The gang want whiskey and women but Bruhn has taken a bullet in the chest, and he tells them no whiskey or women, until he gets that bullet out. The only Doc in the town is a vet and he digs out the bullet and gives Bruhn a large shot of morphine, but it makes Bruhn feel better temporarily though the Doc believes the shot is fatal.

Starrett tells Bruhn that he knows another pass over the mountian to Cheyenne and gets them to leave the town, the next sequences are reminicent of both the desert in GBU and the horses struggling through the snows in TGS. I won't tell anymore. 

Ryan is great in this, Ives is great (better than his Western turn in "The Big Country"), and Louise is good.

It also stars David Nelson (Ricky's brother) as the kid in the gang.

All in all this is comming out on DVD and I'll be picking it up for my collection.  So now we have an interesting progression from The Ox Bow Incident, Day Of The Outlaw, The Great Silence, McCabe & Mrs Miller, Joe Kidd, to Keoma.

Robert Ryan ...  Blaise Starrett
Burl Ives ...  Jack Bruhn
Tina Louise ...  Helen Crane
Alan Marshal ...  Hal Crane
Venetia Stevenson ...  Ernine, Vic's Daughter
David Nelson ...  Gene, Bruhn's Gang
Nehemiah Persoff ...  Dan, Starret's Foreman
Jack Lambert ...  Tex (Bruhn's gang)
Frank DeKova ...  Denver, Bruhn's Gang (as Frank deKova)
Lance Fuller ...  Pace, Bruhn's Gang
Elisha Cook Jr. ...  Larry Teter (town barber) (as Elisha Cook)
Dabbs Greer ...  Doc Langer, Veterinarian
Betsy Jones-Moreland ...  Mrs. Preston (as Betsey Jones-Moreland)
Helen Westcott ...  Vivian
Donald Elson ...  Vic, General Store Owner

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« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2008, 09:36:33 PM »

Sounds interesting. Now that I'm an even bigger fan of Robert Ryan than Groggy, I'll probably be getting the DVD.

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« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2008, 09:49:20 PM »

Its the closest American Western to The Great Silence though its shot in Black & White.

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« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2008, 12:19:20 PM »

Watched the new DVD release yesterday that I recently purchased, again was impressed with what de Toth did with what he had for sets and locations.

The villians in Bruhn's (Berl Ives) gang are quite "spaghetti-esque", even down to the maniacal laughter at one point. Hulking Jack Lambert as Tex is great as the most menacing, Lance Fuller and Frank Dekova also put in convincing performances. The dancing at the "social" is downright hilarious.

Definitely check this out, fans of "The Great Silence" will see its influence on Corbucci. 

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« Reply #7 on: May 30, 2008, 08:59:11 PM »


This is a great film. Everyone here should check it out if they haven't done so already.

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« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2008, 08:48:31 AM »

This is a great film. Everyone here should check it out if they haven't done so already.

Just did the other night.

Three thumbs up!   Afro   Afro   Afro

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« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2008, 02:56:10 PM »

I have only seen one De Toth, Crime Wave, which was excellent. I'lll have to see this one.

Has anyone seen De Toth's House of Wax or Pitfall, or are there any others worth watching? Thanks.

You can chalk me up as a Robert Ryan fanboy. He's amazing in The Set-Up and especially Odds Against Tomorrow.

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« Reply #10 on: November 21, 2009, 09:10:32 PM »

Available on youtube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l3_ov2PJSKk

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« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2009, 09:36:00 PM »

Saw this again just recently on Encore Westerns and it just gets better every time.

An American western that casts aside the tired conventions of the genre. I plan on renting it from Netflix again to show to some movie buddies.

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« Reply #12 on: November 28, 2009, 10:48:24 AM »

I like this film, but one thing about it bothers me. Doesn't Burl Ives turn against his gang awfully easily? What, now that he's dying, he's shocked, shocked to discover the men he's been leading are criminals? And he wants to help Robert Ryan give them what they deserve? He feels no loyalty to his old comrades whatsoever? Strikes me a bit odd. Convenient for the plot, though, eh?

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« Reply #13 on: November 28, 2009, 03:15:22 PM »

Men shock easy when they are dying.  Afro

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« Reply #14 on: April 09, 2010, 12:45:39 PM »

This is boring as hell. There's a couple of interesting ideas, however, they're immersed in a sea of dull mediocrity. The actors didn't really set the world on fire; Robert Ryan is his usual self, and Burl Ives does a slightly softer version of his gruff character from The Big Country (released only a year before). The logic is that there is no logic, as Jack Bruhn says they could have wiped the whole town and nobody would have asked a single question, ever after. (So why didn't they?) Romance? - The usual generic AW crap. The sets? - Poor, to say at least. The ''snow factor''? - If you don't fall asleep you'll see them use it in the last 10-15 minutes or so. Camera use, atmosphere, editing, etc.? - Zero, nada. What else, I don't know... When a band of crazed, starved, horny ruffians drifts into an isolated town with problems of its own, and where all the women are good looking, can you guess what's gonna happen?

Yeah I had big expectations. (IGS my as$.)


5 or 6 out of 10 (6's more like it)

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