Rent The Gunfighter (1950)

3.8 of 5 from 72 ratings
1h 21min
Rent The Gunfighter Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
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Gregory Peck stars as Jimmy Ringo, a notorious killer and the deadliest shot in the old west. Though his appetite for bloodletting has waned, Jimmy is forced to stay on the run by young guns determined to shoot him down. After killing an upstart in self-defence, he escapes from the boy's vengeful brothers to the nearby town of Cayenne. There, he hopes to convince his estranged wife (Helen Westcott) to resume their life together, but his arrival causes a sensation. With more young bucks gunning for him, Ringo's fate lies in the hand of the sheriff (Millard Mitchell), his old bandit partner.
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Nunnally Johnson
William Bowers, William Sellers, André De Toth, Roger Corman, Nunnally Johnson
André De Toth
20th Century Fox
Action & Adventure, Classics
21 Reasons to Love, 21 Reasons to Love..Modern Westerns
Release Date:
Run Time:
81 minutes
English Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, French Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, German Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, Italian Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono, Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono
Danish, Dutch, English Hard of Hearing, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Norwegian, Spanish, Swedish
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen 1.33:1 / 4:3
B & W
Release Date:
Run Time:
85 minutes
English Dolby Digital 1.0 Mono
English Hard of Hearing
Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen 1.37:1
B & W
BLU-RAY Regions:
  • UK Blu-ray premiere
  • Introduction by Alex Cox (Director of Repo Man)
  • Still Gallery

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Reviews (3) of The Gunfighter

Moustached Peck - The Gunfighter review by NO

Spoiler Alert

Although the outcome & story were predictable ,I enjoyed the film.Gregory Peck is always worth watching & interesting to see an early

performance from Karl Malden.

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

When Bad Men Grew Moustaches, and Worse Ones Couldn't - The Gunfighter review by Strovey

Spoiler Alert

A western from the 50s but certainly following in the footsteps of other westerns from that era. Much more of a character study of a man trying to gain some redemption we see a Gregory Peck sans moustache, apparently against the wishes of the studio head, spending a great deal of movie trying to forget his past and move onto a different, brighter, settled future. The trouble is when you lived a tough, unforgiving past trying to shake that off is difficult. The Shootist with John Wayne followed the same path and is more or less the same story.

Here we see a stark monochrome film with an adult theme which compared to some of the output of 1950s western films was clearly setting the future up for a more dirty, unshaven, morally ambiguous future for westerns on the silver screen. The mood is downbeat throughout and threaded through with a feeling of impending doom catching up with the participants, the path they took in life was always leading here and as they get older it gets closer and closer.

Peck is impressive as the world-weary gunfighter whose legend is a huge boulder chained to him that he drags from town to town in the old west and he is well supported by the Millard Mitchell as his former ‘running mate’ Mark Stret the marshal. Both men want to leave their past behind but Stret has managed and Ringo wants to. The way his life choices is further outlined to him and audience when a cheerful rancher, pops into the bar, has one drink, briefly outlines his life and pops out again is odd and perhaps a tad heavy-handed but the point is reinforced for sure. Karl Malden rounds out the triumvirate of men from the old days who is pleased to see Jimmy, hankers for nostalgic old days but really sees the commercial opportunities in a gunslinger far outweighing any ‘trouble’. He is redeemed as a character by being basically decent.

The female side of cast is mainly supplied by Helen Westcott as the estranged wife of Jimmy, Peggy, who I found as a character a bit hard to believe she hung out and married hell-raising gunslinger Jimmy Ringo, of the main actors she seems more of her era, more actorly and dare I say a bit ‘hammy’ but not enough to detract. Jean Parker and the more worldly and thereby more realistic Molly, Ringo’s old partner Bucky’s wife, gives the other female support as the non-romantic interest who ultimately intervenes to the extent that Jimmy stays longer than he should and she is very good in a limited role.

As with stories and films of this era if Peck is the, admittedly anti-hero, of this film the makers need the real black-hat. This role is filled by the whip-thin interesting looking Skip Homeier who plays his role as the spoiled and unlikeable Hunt Bromley with great skill. In lesser hands it could have been a sneering moustache-twirling pantomime baddy but with Homeier and his callow, youthful, ‘he hasn’t started shaving yet’ looks he fits the role perfectly and on the right side of the line of melodramatic. An interesting actor he mainly played youthful villans after coming out of his child-acting career before retiring in the 70s. He certainly had that look and clearly played to his strength.

Oddly enough for a film of his era there is no score, particularly in the more dramatic moments, I for one liked this but it is a strange thing when you notice it. Equally as impressive for me was the lack of gunplay during the running, for a gunslinger western this is impressive and the writers and director have clearly tried to make the story about the man and not his deeds.

In line with the noir style in Hollywood the film has no happy ending and no resolution, it starts with Ringo riding into the scene and ends with Ringo going out.

All in all, for a 1950s gunslinger western The Gunfighter is intelligently and well-made and acted and does ask some questions rather than just try to elicit boos and cheers.

Good work stands up whenever it was made, this much we should know by watching The Gunfighter

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

Best supporting moustache - The Gunfighter review by KW

Spoiler Alert

Gregory Peck is Johnny Ringo, the fastest draw in the land, an outlaw who wants to settle down to a life more ordinary, but he is chased down by his own mythology, a man destined to pay not just for the deeds he has done, but the stories told about him.

This is a classic western, with a brilliant central performance by Gregory Peck’s moustache, and excellent supporting performances by Gregory Peck, Karl Malden, Millard Mitchell and Peggy Westcroft. Indeed, everyone is good in this and there’s not a wasted frame in the whole thing - it is perfect, characterful, lean storytelling.

 The theme is serious and the outcome inevitable, but I was surprised at the amount of humour in the film. I particularly enjoyed the moment where a fight breaks out in the street and it may be the least energetic fight in screen history. It has nothing to do with the main plot but it does prompt an observer to comment that ‘I seen better fights at a prayer meeting.’ Excellent! 

I rented the DVD - transfer okay but not amazing and no extras. There has been a Criterion Collection release in the US so maybe a UK version will follow here.

0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.

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