Jesse James vs. the Daltons (1954)

Laughing Gravy
Balcony Gang, Foist Class
Laughing Gravy
Balcony Gang, Foist Class
Joined: 4:44 AM - Sep 01, 2005

3:41 AM - Sep 04, 2018 #1



Jesse James vs. the Daltons (1954) Dir. William Castle
Produced by Sam Katzman
A Columbia Picture
65 min. / Technicolor / 1.37:1

DVD: Mill Creek (The Fastest Guns in the West collection)

Ten years after a dirty little coward shot Mr. Howard, the son of Jesse James is still convinced his father is alive, and he's going to dangle the $100,000 Jesse hid away somewhere, plus some subterfuge, plus a pretty blonde who as a child knew Jess, to find his infamous dad.

Dang, these Technicolor Katzman/Castle westerns sure are pretty to look at (I'd previously watched Conquest of Cochise) and although Mr. Castle isn't remembered for cowboy movies, both of the ones I've watched have been above-average. This one's a bit lacking in the casting department (our stars are, um, Brett King, Barbara Jo Lawrence, James Griffith, and Rory Mallinson, plus a cameo by movie-killer Syd Saylor) and there is so much stuff tossed at the screen in the opening sequence of the film that I made myself a $2 side bet that the film was originally shown in 3D (I won). I'd actually enjoy seeing this in 3D: it's one of those cheapies where the director wanted the audience to get top value for their cardboard glasses so milk pails, wine, guns, fists, horses, and axes get tossed out into the audience every couple of minutes. Looks like fun.

Million-dollar Dialog:
One Dalton, watching his brother clean his gun for the umpteenth time: "Ain't you through polishin' that thing yet?"
T'other Dalton: "A human bein's got the right do die fancy, Emmett."

Although the eight films in the William Castle set from Mill Creek are spread across only two discs, the picture and sound have been superb in both of the Technicolor films I've watched. A great value for some good westerns.
"I'm glad that this question came up, because there are so many ways to answer it that one of them is bound to be right." - Robert Benchley
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