Novelist Elmore Leonard cited this 1967 western as one of his favorite movies adapted from his work, and it's an especially fine realization of his flawless structure and wish-I'd-said-that dialogue. The story is a conscious rewrite of Stagecoach with a revisionist slant: Paul Newman is a half-white, half-Apache loner who becomes de facto leader of a traveling party after they're ambushed by bandits and left to die in the desert, Diane Cilento is the woman of ill repute, and Fredric March is the corrupt scion of polite society. Martin Ritt directed, cementing this firmly in the tradition of Anthony Mann; the dynamic wide-screen compositions are by legendary cinematographer James Wong Howe. With Richard Boone, Martin Balsam, and Cameron Mitchell. 111 min.
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