Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Naked Spur (Anthony Mann, 1953)

****½
USA



The third in the series of taut, hardboiled Westerns Anthony Mann made together with James Stewart. Jimmy plays a dejected bountyhunter forced to trust a couple of patently untrustworthy people to help him transport a wanted criminal across the Colorado Rockies (the real ones - no back projection).

Like a lot of the Mann-Stewart collaborations, this one's notable for eschewing heroics or even a single figure of irreproachable decency, for a blistering lead performance, as well as for a screenplay without an ounce of fat.

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