Flesh and the Spur (1957)
Released in 1957: A man searches the west for the killer of his twin brother who stole a unique gun from his dead brother.
Directed by Edward L. Cahn
Written by Charles B. Griffith, Mark Hanna, Lou Rusoff and Edward L. Cahn.
The Actors: John Agar (Luke Random and twin brother Matt Random), Marla English (Wild Willow), Mike Connors (Stacy Tanner), Raymond Hatton (Windy Wagonwheels), Maria Monay (Lola), Joyce Meadows (Rina), Kenne Duncan (Kale Tanner), Frank Lackteen (Havasuapi Warrior Leader), Mel Gaines (Blackie), Michael Harris (deputy), Eddie Kafafian (Bud), Richard Alexander (barkeep), Herman Hack (barfly), Kermit Maynard (man standing at bar), Bud Osborne (masked outlaw in the rocks), Buddy Roosevelt (outlaw), Tom Steele (saloon heavy), Dale Van Sickel (Pete Longo).
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"Touch" Connors - that is the screen name that Mike Connors used for several years before becoming the television detective "Mannix." For this movie Mike borrowed money from all his friends and financed it as Exexutive Producer. I can't say that this is the most thrilling cowboy western I've ever seen, but there is a pretty good story line, and it will keep you guessing most of the way through.
The opening scene is of a prison break, and we see the back of a man in striped prison garb escaping into the wilderness, and then coming upon a farm where the escaped prisoner kills the farmer and steals his gun. Then the farmers brother, his identical twin brother, finds his dead body and swears revenge on his brother's killer. As Luke (John Agar) heads out to find his brother's keeper, he happens upon Connors, playing Stacy Tanner, mystery man. Stacy is a wild-talking cowboy that shows little respect for women, handles a gun well, and we don't know if he is a good guy or a bad guy. He claims that he wants to kill the whole gang of outlaws, while Luke just wants the man that killed his brother. Wild Willow is an Indian girl that is added to the mix, and they are all hunting for the outlaw gang for one reason or another. On their journey towards the bad lands they meet a medicine man with two daughters, and they all hook up together for the trip to the next town, where Luke and Stacy hope to find some of the gang.
In the saloon while the medicine man is making his pitch, Luke and Stacy hang up their guns on the wall, like everyone else, and they spot the unique gun that was Luke's brothers. A good saloon fist fight entails, and after the fight is over the two men discover that whoever had the unique gun had left. They discover that it is a man named Tanner, that left the saloon to meet secretly with the medicine man's daughter. Luke and Stacy take off after the man, and find the daughter shot dead in the woods nearby. Now we all think that Tanner shot and killed her, but something in the back of our minds triggers a thought. Earlier the medicine man swore that he'd kill his daughter before he would let her continue seeing the outlaw. Hmmm, now we think that Stacy (Mike Connors) might really be one of the outlaw gang, even though he tags along claming that he wants to kill the outlaw gang. And we have the old medicine man, who may have killed his own daughter . . . .
This mottled group heads into the desert to find the gang, and will encounter not only the gang, but Willow's indian tribe warriors, and the final battle, where all becomes clear, and we discover who is good and who is bad, and who will survive and who will not. All in all, a good story to watch while you are emptying your big bowl of popcorn.