Speaks his mind on music & movies!
A group of drunk cowboys shoot up a small town, having some fun. An old man is accidently killed in the recklessness. The next scene we see a lone man ride slowly into town. He’s a Lawman and the town folk react like he’s someone to be feared. The lawman goes and talks to the marshall inquiring about some local men, the drunken cowboys who shot up his town. He’s there to bring them back for trial. The marshall informs Maddox (Lawman) that these men on his list are all solid citizens not outlaws. Maddox gives him the old 24 hours to bring them in or he will hunt them down, bring them back for trial or kill them if he has to. Maddox is relentless and does his dirty job to the letter of the law. We watch this play out as the cowboys refuse to comply.
This film is pretty simple. No big twists and turns. But there was so much that kept my attention. There’s some great cinematography. Michael Winner directed a lot of these types of films and I ate them up. But it’s the performances that got me in this one. Mainly Lee J. Cobb, Robert Ryan, Sheree North, Robert Duvall, Richard Jordan and Burt Lancaster. There are some light weight town characters but when the actors I mentioned go to work each one of them brings living breathing human beings. Worth the watch for CB. They all have lots of life going on in their characters. Turmoil. Perfect casting. Some of that real good western dialogue is sprinkled in.
Burt brings a stoic, natural realism get the job done presence. No push. He is the character and you believe it. Every once in a while he lets his human side out but most the time there is just a meanness under the surface. A violent man.
There is a real dark ominous, roughness to this film and it’s very violent. CB was a big duster fan (still is) and Burt Lancaster fan. So he got what he wanted in Lawman. This one has stayed with me for a long time. Is this the best western ever made? No but it’s worth a watch.
Maddox isn’t leaving until his job is done or someone is going to die.
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