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Starring Walter Huston, Harry Carey, Russell Hopton, Raymond Hatton,
Ralph Ince, Andy Devine
Directed by Edward L. Cahn
Runtime: 75 min.
Print Quality: B
An early screen version of the oft-filmed tale of Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday,
and the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral, Law and Order was adapted by young
screenwriter John Huston from W. R. Burnett's novel, which alters the
names of the principals but few of the facts. The film opens with a
montage of the settling of the West, concluding with the observation that
lawless behavior soon followed in many settlements. Walter Huston plays
Frame Johnson, a steely-eyed gambler whose three companions, Brant,
Luther (Frame's brother), and Deadwood, form a team of sorts, wandering
from town to town in search of a good poker game. Johnson's reputation
as "the man that cleaned up Kansas, the killingest peace officer that ever
lived" precedes him when he arrives in Tombstone, a town controlled by
the Northrup brothers and their crooked sheriff, Fin Elder. A committee of
lawful citizens, led by a judge, try to hire Johnson to clean up the town,
but he's reluctant to pin on the badge again. Inevitably, he does, and
there's a showdown that leaves a corral full of corpses.
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