Shoot-Out at Medicine Bend (1957)

Passed   |    |  Western


Shoot-Out at Medicine Bend (1957) Poster

In Medicine Bend, a crooked businessman has the town mayor and sheriff in his pocket while his henchmen raid the wagon trains passing through the region.


6.5/10
537

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28 July 2014 | fredcdobbs5
3
| Poor Scott western, and he seems to know it
"Shootout at Medicine Band"--the title shootout of which doesn't occur until the film's almost over--is a flat, dull, by-the-numbers western and Scott's last for Warner Brothers, where he made some of his best ones. Scott seems to have some idea of what a dog this picture is, as it's plain to see that his heart isn't in it and he basically sleepwalks his way through it. Can't blame him, though. Even a supporting cast of familiar western faces--Trevor Bardette, Harry Lauter, Harry Harvey, among others--can't make up for the inept direction, hackneyed and predictable script and feeble attempts at comic relief in the form of Gordon Jones, a good character actor who does much better in actual comedies ("The Abbott & Costello Show", "My Sister Eileen", "McLintock", among others) and is badly miscast. James Garner and Angie Dickinson do well enough in early roles, but while blonde dance-hall girl Dani Crayne--better known later on as the widow of David Janssen--is absolutely gorgeous, she's not much of an actress, which doesn't really matter since she's not given much to do except look great (which she does well), warble a song (which she doesn't do well) and wind up with James Garner.

All in all, this is one of Scott's lesser--much lesser--westerns and worth a look only if you're a Randolph Scott fan and have never seen it before. That's why I watched it, and I was sadly disappointed at its low quality. If you're a Scott fan you no doubt will be, too.

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