Though Hawks' last film moves away from the claustrophobic night-time interiors of Rio Bravo and the second half of El Dorado, the third Western in this loose trilogy scripted by Leigh Brackett retains many similarities with its predecessors. Wayne is the Union cavalry officer who, after the Civil War, joins forces with a couple of Confederates he once captured, in an effort to hunt down a treacherous bootlegger. Rambling, relaxed (though with several superbly staged set pieces), and often shot through with laconic humour, it's another of Hawks' fascinating portraits of disparate individuals brought together into a cohesive moral force by a mutual sense of respect, responsibility, and physical and emotional needs. If it lacks the formal perfection of Rio Bravo and the moving elegy for men grown old of El Dorado, it's still a marvellous film.
Cast and crew
|Screenwriter:||Leigh Brackett, Burton Wohl|