The Badge of Marshal Brennan (1957)

Approved   |    |  Romance, Western


The Badge of Marshal Brennan (1957) Poster

A pseudo-marshal, a local doctor and the town sheriff must join forces to battle a greedy cattle-baron whose herd, locally sold, is contaminated with a contagious disease.


5.9/10
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15 August 2006 | aimless-46
5
| Extremely Slooooow
The Badge of Marshall Brennan is an extremely SLOW moving western from 1957. The basic premise is fine. A rather tame outlaw named Jeff Harlan (Jim Davis) helps the title character (Douglas Fowley) - who was wounded by hostile Indians out in the desert. When Marshall Brennan dies Jeff takes his badge, their last conversation had been about Jeff's childhood dream of being a lawman.

In the nearest town a conflict is starting between the doctor (Harry Lauter) and a rich cattleman and his son Shan (an extremely young Lee Van Cleef-already playing a bad guy). The doctor suspects the cattle are infected with Black Spot Fever and that it is being transmitted to the people in the town.

There will soon be a love triangle with Jeff and the good doctor vying for the attentions of a redheaded café owner named Murdock (Arleen Whelan-still extremely pretty at age 40). Marty Robbins (soon to be a county music star) plays a Mexican with blonde hair and a very bad "Cisco Kid" accent.

The problem is that the story elements are enough for a 40-50 minute television show, not a 74-minute feature film. So there are expanded establishing shots and considerable chatter, not in the service of the plot but as a way to pad the running length. Making this the type of film that is best watched while doing your homework or reading a book; it is hard to give the thing more than 30% of your focus.

Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child.

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