WARLOCK (1959)

   Henry Fonda, Richard Widmark, Anthony Quinn, Dorothy Malone, Dolores Michaels, and Edward Dmytryk (director)
   Edward Dmytryk’s film, based on the highly regarded novel by Oakley Hall, is one of the most psychologically developed Westerns of the late classic period. The town of Warlock is beset by an outlaw gang, so it seeks out the renowned hired gun Clay Blaisedell (Fonda). When the gunman arrives he brings with him Tom Morgan (Quinn), a well-dressed sophisticate who is sensitive about his clubfoot. Morgan serves as Blaisedell’s handler. He is officious in his care for the gunman, and some critics note a homoerotic theme in their relationship. The gunman is ever busy with his colt revolvers. Once Blaisedell cleanses the town of its outlaw problem, he stays around. One of the outlaws, Johnny Gannon (Widmark), repudiates the gang and stays to take the town’s badge as lawman. But the plot is much more complex than merely having Gannon and Blaisedell face off in a showdown. Instead, Blaisedell and Morgan have a falling out, which culminates in the showdown. Two women enter the scene, and the plot really becomes complicated.

Historical Dictionary of Westerns in Cinema. . 2012.

Look at other dictionaries:

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