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Thread: Classic Movie Westerns- The Gunfighter (1950)

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    M o d e r a t o r ethanedwards's Avatar
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    Classic Movie Westerns- The Gunfighter (1950)

    THE GUNFIGHTER

    DIRECTED BY HENRY KING
    PRODUCED BY NUNNALLY JOHNSON
    ORIGINAL MUSIC ALRED NEWMAN
    TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX FILM CORPORATION

    ..

    Information from IMDb

    Plot Summary
    Aging gunslinger, Jimmy Ringo, rides into a strange town
    where he's immediately recognized.
    As kids gather at the saloon windows to glimpse the killer
    and townsfolk gossip about his
    exploits, the town marshal tries to keep the peace.
    He wants Ringo out of town, but Ringo asks for a few hours' grace
    to see his sweetheart,
    whom he hasn't seen in more than eight years,
    and their son, whom he's never seen.
    Meanwhile, three angry cowboys are on his trail
    and the town's young hothead is scheming to see just how fast Jimmy is.
    Ringo wants to be left alone, to live with his family,
    maybe on a small ranch away from his reputation.
    But can he escape that reputation and find peace?
    Written by J Hailey

    Full Cast
    Gregory Peck ... Jimmy Ringo
    Helen Westcott ... Peggy Walsh
    Millard Mitchell ... Marshal Mark Strett
    Jean Parker ... Molly
    Karl Malden ... Mac
    Skip Homeier ... Hunt Bromley
    Anthony Ross ... Deputy Charlie Norris
    Verna Felton ... Mrs. August Pennyfeather
    Ellen Corby ... Mrs. Devlin
    Richard Jaeckel ... Eddie
    Murray Alper ... Townsman at Funeral (uncredited)
    Larry Buchanan ... Bit Part (uncredited)
    Cliff Clark ... Jerry Marlowe (uncredited)
    Angela Clarke ... Mac's Wife (uncredited)
    David Clarke ... Second Brother (uncredited)
    Edmund Cobb ... Citizen (uncredited)
    Dick Curtis ... Crowd Extra (uncredited)
    Eddie Ehrhart ... Archie (uncredited)
    Alan Hale Jr. ... First Brother (uncredited)
    Harry Harvey ... Ike (uncredited)
    Jean Inness ... Alice Marlowe (uncredited)
    Tommy Lee ... Long Fu - Cayenne Restaurant Cook (uncredited)
    Pierce Lyden ... Barfly (uncredited)
    Mae Marsh ... Mrs. O'Brien (uncredited)
    Harry B. Mendoza ... Frank Loving (uncredited)
    James Millican ... Pete (uncredited)
    Alberto Morin ... Pablo (uncredited)
    Edward Mundy ... Man on Street (uncredited)
    B.G. Norman ... Jimmie Walsh (uncredited)
    Eddie Parks ... Joe the Barber (uncredited)
    Hank Patterson ... Jake (uncredited)
    John Pickard ... Third Brother (uncredited)
    Harry Shannon ... Chuck (uncredited)
    Kim Spalding ... Clerk (uncredited)
    Houseley Stevenson ... Mr. Barlow (uncredited)
    Ferris Taylor ... George the Grocer (uncredited)
    Kenneth Tobey ... Swede (uncredited)
    Archie Twitchell ... Johnny (uncredited)
    William Vedder ... Minister (uncredited)
    Dan White ... Card Player in Barber Shop (uncredited)
    Anne Whitfield ... Carrie Lou (uncredited)
    Credda Zajac ... Mrs. Cooper (uncredited)

    Writing Credits
    William Bowers (Story & screenplay) and
    William Sellers (screenplay)
    André De Toth (story) (as Andre de Toth)
    Nunnally Johnson uncredited

    Cinematography
    Arthur C. Miller

    Trivia
    Large painting on wall behind Gregory Peck's chair in bar room is "Custer's Last Fight", painted in 1884 by Cassily Adams and reproduced as a lithographic print by Otto Becker from Adams's original painting. These prints were distributed in 1896 to bars and taverns all over America by the Anheuser Busch Company.

    The studio hated Gregory Peck's authentic period mustache. In fact, the head of production at Fox, Spyros P. Skouras, was out of town when production began. By the time he got back, so much of the film had been shot that it was too late to order Peck to shave it off and re-shoot. After the film did not do well at the box office, Skouras ran into Peck and he reportedly said, "That mustache cost us millions".

    Bob Dylan's 1986 song "Brownsville Girl," co-written with Sam Shepard, alludes to watching Gregory Peck in this film. Peck himself thanked Dylan publicly when he delivered the speech when Dylan was given his Kennedy Center award in 1997.

    In 1996, veteran character actor Richard Jaeckel, who played "Eddie", was diagnosed with cancer at the same time his wife had Alzheimer's disease. The Jaeckels had lost their Brentwood (CA) home, were over $1 million in debt and Jaeckel was basically homeless. His family tried unsuccessfully to place him into the Motion Picture and Television Hospital in Woodland Hills, CA. Peck lobbied for Jaeckel's admittance, and three days later Jaeckel was placed in the facility. He stayed in the hospital until his death in June 1997.

    The western street in this film is the same one used in The Ox-Bow Incident.

    Based on the life and exploits of an actual western gunslinger named John Ringo, a distant cousin of the outlaw Younger family. The real Ringo was a ruthless murderer and survivor of the infamous gunfight at the OK Corral, against (Dr.) John Holliday, Wyatt Earp and the Earp brothers. Also unlike the movie's account, the actual John Ringo--his real name--suffered a severe bout of melancholy following a visit to his family in California in July of 1882 and went on a monumental ten-day alcoholic binge, which climaxed when he sat down under an oak tree, drew his gun and used it to commit suicide.

    "Screen Director's Playhouse" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on June 7, 1951 with Gregory Peck reprising his film role.

    Spoilers
    This film was the subject of the classic Bob Dylan song "Brownsville Girl". It starts: "There was this movie I seen one time, about a man riding 'cross the desert and it starred Gregory Peck. He was shot down by a hungry kid, trying to make a name for himself, the townspeople wanted to track that kid down and string him up by his neck. 'Turn him loose, let him go, let him say he outdrew me fair and square. I want him to feel what it's like to every moment face his death'" Then Dylan goes on to compare his own position in pop music to the gunfighter.

    Goof
    Continuity: When Jimmy Ringo goes into the hotel room to get the sniper with the winchester rifle, the lock on the door is just a handle. There is no mechanism to go into the jamb to allow the door to lock.

    Memorable Quotes

    Filming Locations
    Alabama Hills, Lone Pine, California, USA
    Death Valley National Park, California, USA
    Melody Ranch - 24715 Oak Creek Avenue, Newhall, California, USA
    Stage 8, 20th Century Fox Studios - 10201 Pico Blvd., Century City, Los Angeles, California, USA(studio)

    Best Wishes
    Keith
    Totnes- the Tombstone of England

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    M o d e r a t o r ethanedwards's Avatar
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    Re: (New Review) Classic Movie Westerns- The Gunfighter (1950)

    The Gunfighter starred Gregory Peck,
    Helen Westcott, Millard Mitchell
    and
    Karl Malden (who came back after a three year hiatus).
    This film was directed by Henry King.
    It was written by screenwriters William Bowers and William Sellers,
    with an uncredited rewrite by writer and producer Nunnally Johnson,
    from a story by Bowers and screenwriter and director Andre de Toth.
    Also look out for another early movie appearance of Richard Jaeckel

    User Review

    Psychological Western with an impressive Gregory Peck
    14 October 2006 | by Camera Obscura (Leiden, The Dutch Mountains)
    The Western is not my favorite genre. I've seen some of John Ford's classics and many B-Westerns. Of most I can't even remember the titles, but this one is different. It's much more a psychological study, without the grand landscapes, backgrounds or epic story lines. If John Ford's splendid cinematography is not for you, this one cuts back to the basics of human relationships, without the epic adventure many Westerns try to depict.

    This film is skimmed down to an absolute minimum with Gregory Peck as Jimmy Ringo, notorious killer and the deadliest shot in the Old West. Though his appetite for bloodletting is over, Ringo is forced to stay on the run from young ambitious gunners determined to shoot him down. After killing an upstart in self-defense, he escapes to the nearby town of Caynenne. There, he hopes to convince his estranged wife (Helen Westcott) to resume their life together, but his arrival causes a sensation. With more young bucks gunning for him, Ringo's fate lies in the hands of the sheriff (Millard Mitchell), his old bandit partner.

    With this film the old credo, "less is more", is evident. No great showdowns, not much action, just Gregory Peck in a great character study with carefully built-up tension. He never let me down, giving a fantastic performance, again
    Last edited by ethanedwards; August 5th, 2011 at 05:50 AM.
    Best Wishes
    Keith
    Totnes- the Tombstone of England

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    State Governor DukePilgrim's Avatar
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    Re: (New Review) Classic Movie Westerns- The Gunfighter (1950)

    Watching it a couple of years ago I had high expectations of a Anthony Mann / Stewart type western. It is well made and starts well but just basically loses momentum halfway through lack of action.

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    Deputy US Marshal ringo kid's Avatar
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    Re: (New Review) Classic Movie Westerns- The Gunfighter (1950)

    gregory peck's best western

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    >>>Outlaw<<<< Stumpy's Avatar
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    Re: (New Review) Classic Movie Westerns- The Gunfighter (1950)

    Quote Originally Posted by ringo kid View Post
    gregory peck's best western
    My personal favorite of his is "The Stalking Moon" but I'd rank "The Gunfighter" probably second. He made several Westerns I really like.
    De gustibus non est disputandum

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    Re: (New Review) Classic Movie Westerns- The Gunfighter (1950)

    I'm a Gregory Peck fan - hell I just watched "The Guns of Navarone", but my personal western favorite is "The Big Country".




    We deal in lead, friend.

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    >>>Outlaw<<<< Stumpy's Avatar
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    Re: (New Review) Classic Movie Westerns- The Gunfighter (1950)

    Quote Originally Posted by Gorch View Post
    I'm a Gregory Peck fan - hell I just watched "The Guns of Navarone", but my personal western favorite is "The Big Country".




    We deal in lead, friend.
    Oops, you just made a liar out of me because "The Big Country" is also my favorite Peck Western. Guess the others I named are 2 and 3. I also liked "The Bravados" and "Yellow Sky".
    De gustibus non est disputandum

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    Deputy Sheriff The Irish Duke's Avatar
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    Re: What Was The Last Western You Watched?

    The Gunfighter with Gregory Peck, it was pretty good and had a decent moral message and such but it felt at times like a badly done Ford Western to me, trying to go overly moralistic and maybe not getting the balance right. I'm really not a fan of movies that take place over the period of a day or so like this and High Noon.

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    Deputy Sheriff
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    Re: What Was The Last Western You Watched?

    Just to let folks know, The Gunfighter is on right now on Encore Westerns. Started at 11:05 pm est.
    Last edited by WaynamoJim; December 11th, 2013 at 10:21 PM.

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