The Nevadan (January 11, 1950)
Released on January 11, 1950: A city-dude stranger gets mixed up with a bank robber and the Sheriff that is on the outlaw's trail, and he has his own mysterious agenda.
Directed by Gordon Douglas
Written by George W. George, George F. Slavin and Rowland Brown.
The Actors: Randolph Scott (Andrew Barclay), Dorothy Malone (Karen Galt), Forrest Tucker (Tom Tanner), Frank Faylen (Jeff), George Macready (Edward Galt), Charles Kemper (Sheriff Dyke Merrick), Jeff Corey (Bart), Tom Powers (Bill Martin), Jock Mahoney (Sandy), Stanley Andrews (Deputy Morgan), Stanley Blystone (Red Sand bank clerk), Charles Halton (Red Sand bank manager), Reed Howes (hotel guest), Olin Howland (Rusty), James Kirkwood (Tex), Kate Drain Lawson (Mama Flores), Hank Mann (waiter in saloon and barfly), Lois Mason (Wilbur), Francis McDonald (hotel guest), Bill Wolfe (barfly).
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Tom Tanner (Forrest Tucker) stole over $200,000 in gold and hid it before being caught by the Sheriff. But as the Sheriff is taking him to prison, he escapes and heads for his gold. On the way he discovers a city-dude Andrew Barclay following him (Randolph Scott), and decides to swap clothes with him so he won't be recognized. And for some reason, he takes Barclay with him as he goes to the bank in Twin Forks and asks for an envelope that the bank has been holding for him. A customer at one of the bank windows is watching intently, and . . . wait . . . can it be . . . yup, it is Frank Faylen, the fellow that played the father of Dobie Gillis in the 1950's sit-com. Wow, it's good to see him. But back to the movie, now. As Tanner and Barclay leave town, about thirty miles out of town, Jeff (Frank Faylen) and his brother ambush them and demands that Tanner give him the envelope that he got in the bank. When Tanner refuses, Jeff walks him over to a tree that he will hang him on if he doesn't turn over the letter, but as they are walking to the tree, Barclay grabs the brother's gun and turns the tables on Jeff. Tanner wants to hang Jeff now, but Barclay persuades him to let them go, but take their horses and make them walk the thirty miles back to Twin Forks.
Later, as Tanner and Barclay are sleeping, Tanner gets up and rides away, leaving Barclay behind. But Barclay gets up and rides toward town, but his horse goes limp, and he stops at a ranch outside town. The ranch is run by pretty young Karen Galt (Dorothy Malone), daughter of Ed Galt, the biggest man in the territory, who owns not only the ranch, but most of the town. The two henchmen that ambushed Tanner and Barclay are both working for Galt. But the daughter is sweet and innocent, not knowing how dastardly her dad is. She and Barclay hit it off at once, and she offers to nurse his lame horse back to health and loan him another horse to use. Barclay then goes into town and stirs up some pretty good trouble, letting Galt know that he is tied in somehow with Tanner. Galt's men beat Barclay pretty good trying to get him to lead them to the gold that Tanner has hidden. Later that night Barclay climbs into Tanner's bedroom window as he is sleeping, in search of something that will tell him where the gold is, but as he is looking, someone else climbs into the window, and as Barclay watches from the shadows, Tanner awakes and shoots him down. It seems that the dead fellow wasn't carrying, so the Sheriff put Tanner in jail to wait trial.
Galt plans to break Tanner out of jail and make him lead them to his hidden gold, but Barclay breaks him out of jail first, and takes him to an old shack on the Galt ranch that Karen Galt had shown Barclay earlier. While there, Barclay confides in Karen that he is a Federal Marshall trailing Tanner to recover the stolen gold, because he needs her help to get some mules to carry the gold when they find it. Karen gives them some mules from the ranch, but unfortunately she then goes into town to face her pappa, and without thinking tells him that Barclay is a Marshall.
So now we have Tanner and Barclay with mules heading into the nearby mountains to find the hidden gold, and we have Galt and his men following behind to take the gold for themselves. Just after Tanner shows Barclay the hidden gold, Galt and his men arrive, and we are in store for a good old-fashioned cowboy gun fight to the finish. There are a couple of surprises here, and of course I won't say how this one ends, but it is a great ending to a very good cowboy adventure. Randolph Scott is at his finest as the tall, tough, straight talking man of the west.