Budd Boetticher’s magisterial western, now newly restored, stars Randolph Scott as a haunted loner seeking vengeance in a bleak, elemental world full of dangerous strangers.
Dir-Prod Budd Boetticher
Scr Burt Kennedy
With Randolph Scott, Karen Steele, Pernell Roberts
UK Distribution Park Circus Limited
A highpoint in the ‘Ranown’ series of westerns its veteran star made with Boetticher, writer Burt Kennedy and producer Harry Joe Brown, this centres on a loner (Scott) who tracks down a killer and starts taking him to town to face justice; presumably, like some of those they encounter on their perilous journey, he’s after the reward. Only after they’ve been joined by an attractive widow, however, do the bounty hunter’s real intentions finally become clear. Boetticher and Kennedy excelled at working imaginative variations on classic western themes, delivering intriguing narrative twists, psychological subtlety and moral complexity to hugely satisfying effect. The robust performances and stark Southwestern landscapes, so evocative of violent trauma and bitter betrayal, are vividly served by this new restoration.
Restored in 4K by Sony Pictures Entertainment. Wetgate scanning, digital image restoration by Cineric, Inc., NY. Color grading, conforming, additional image restoration at Roundabout Entertainment, Santa Monica. Audio restoration by Deluxe Audio.