14 November 2012 | hitchcockthelegend
When you ride into Purgatory, say goodbye to God.
Four Fast Guns is directed by William J. Hole Jr. and written by James Edmiston & Dallas Gaultois. It stars James Craig, Martha Vickers, Edgar Buchanan, Brett Halsey and Paul Richards. Music is by Alec Compinsky and cinematography by John M. Nickolaus Jr.
After killing in self defence the town tamer who was on his way to clean up the town of Purgatory, gunman Tom Sabin (Craig) finds himself offered the position himself. With the financial rewards too great to turn down, Sabin agrees and finds a town being ruled and pillaged by wheelchair bound Hoag (Richards). Hoag has the financial pull to hire the best gunmen around to do his bidding, and soon enough Sabin finds he must out gun the men sent to kill him. Tricky enough as it is, more so when one of them turns out to be a familiar face.
Efficient and shot in black and white for noirish effect, Four Fast Guns kind of gets in and does its job with the minimum of fuss. The problem is is that it really offers up nothing new in the genre, with the attempt to blend an airy comedic tone with the drama never sitting comfortably together. There's a standard love triangle stitched into the quilt, which works whilst going exactly where you expect it to go, and the high points of the film come by way of the gun play show downs and Edgar Buchanan's ebullience. Acting performances are adequately of a low budget B Western standard, photography is pleasing (Darn Good Westerns DVD print is nice) and the brisk running time doesn't allow for pointless filler.
Enjoyable enough while it is on, instantly forgettable once it's over. 6/10