The Lawless Breed (1952)

Approved   |    |  Western


The Lawless Breed (1952) Poster

After being released from prison, former gun-fighter John Wesley Hardin hopes to have his autobiography published in order to rehabilitate his tarnished reputation.


6.3/10
1,094

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18 May 2010 | dougdoepke
Okay Western
An okay Western based loosely on fact. Viewers tuning in today are likely catching up with Hudson's first starring role, following several years in supporting parts. Now, when I think Western, I've got to admit Hudson doesn't spring first to mind. Nonetheless, whatever he lacks in frontier grit, he makes up for in energetic commitment. I also suspect that he and Adams are the best-looking twosome to appear in any oater, any time any place. In fact, Adams sports the sleekest array of supposed frontier fashion that I've seen.

The story itself is unexceptional and cheaply produced, never getting beyond LA area locations. Indeed, this may be the only Western where the indoors is more compelling to look at than the outdoors. The movie does come up with a bunch of up-and-coming supporting players, like Van Cleef, Weaver, Ansara—too bad they don't get more screen time. Then too, McIntire's unusual dual role, both with Old Testament beards, had me confused until I consulted IMDb. I expect there's a backstory to this duplicate casting.

Producer Alland went from here to producing some of the most entertaining sci-fi of the decade— e.g. It Came from Outer Space (1953), Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954). I'm just sorry he didn't insist here on sticking with the original ending (thanks, reviewer bkoganbing). A happy ending may have pleased audiences of the time, but the original would have been more memorable.

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$1,300,000

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