De Toth directs this noir-ish western starring Joel Mcrea, Veronica Lake, Don DeFore and the enchanting Arleen Whelan. An interesting take on the cattle vs. sheep/land battle sub genre, although it loses steam about 2/3 of the way through. There were so many interesting angles this film could have taken, unfortunately it takes the safe route and stumbles to the finish line. Still, very respectable and very much worth a watch. My disappointment stems from how well this movie builds in the first half.
*Forgot to mention that the female characters actually improve the movie, Lake's character is probably the most interesting character in the film.
a generous 7/10. should have been great.
The overlong, murky shootout between DeFore and Preston Foster cripples the film in the third act.
Watched this the other night myself and I agree 110% with your analysis of it. I thought it was a great story, great characters, but the night-time shootout was borderline tedious.
At least the climax where McCrea guns down the villain with a shotgun makes up for it. That was pretty badass.