6.1/10
399
9 user 7 critic

Star in the Dust (1956)

A sheriff planning on legally hanging a killer, has to contend with farmers who want to lynch him, and cattlemen who want to help him escape.

Director:

Charles F. Haas (as Charles Haas)

Writers:

Oscar Brodney (screenplay), Lee Leighton (novel)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Agar ... Sheriff Bill Jorden
Mamie Van Doren ... Ellen Ballard
Richard Boone ... Sam Hall
Coleen Gray ... Nellie Mason
Leif Erickson ... George Ballard
James Gleason ... Orval Jones
Randy Stuart ... Nan Hogan
Terry Gilkyson Terry Gilkyson ... The Music Man
Paul Fix ... Mike MacNamara
Harry Morgan ... Lew Hogan
Stuart Randall ... Jess Ryman
Robert Osterloh ... Rigdon
Stanley Andrews ... Ben Smith
John Daheim John Daheim ... Jiggs Larribee (as John Day)
Stafford Repp ... Leo Roos
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Storyline

The sheriff of Gunlock is planning to hang Sam Hall, who shot three farmers found on cattle land, at sundown. At the casino, betting is 8 to 3 he won't make it. The cattlemen are set to rescue Sam; the farmers hope to lynch him before he can be rescued; and Hall schemes for escape with his girl Nellie. But Sheriff Jorden is most concerned with finding out who hired Hall: a leading suspect is the sheriff's future brother-in-law. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

WITH HIS OWN HANDS HE PUT THE ROPE AROUND HIS NECK...and then defied the law to hang him! (original herald) See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Western

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

13 June 1956 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Noch heute sollst du hängen See more »

Filming Locations:

USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.00 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Clint Eastwood appears in his first western (uncredited) as Tom the ranch hand. See more »

Goofs

A couple of townsmen hurry sheriff Jorden to make a decision, because "It's almost two o'clock"(pm). But later, while sheriff is firing back at ranchers from his office, there is a clock on the wall and the time it shows is around 10:30, though it's still daylight. See more »

Quotes

Sam Hall: [refusing blindfold prior to hanging] "The Sun's setting for me. It'd be a shame to miss it."
See more »

Soundtracks

Sam Hall
Written by Terry Gilkyson
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User Reviews

 
The odds were against the sheriff going through with the hanging.
1 May 2005 | by tmwestSee all my reviews

When this film was released in Brazil, a famous critic ranked it among the best films of the year (probably 1957). I would no go as far as that, but Star in the Dust is a B western with higher ambitions that partially achieves them. The story is about the sheriff who has to hang a killer Sam Hall (Richard Boone) before sundown. The cattlemen who probably hired the killer want to turn him loose, but the ranchers (the ones that were killed were ranchers), who have the local teacher as their leader want the hanging to go through. All the time there is a man singing a ballad about Sam Hall and it blends well with the film. Mamie Van Doren in an unusual role where she is not meant to be sexy is the sheriff's bride and also the sister of the banker and leader of the cattlemen. There is a constant betting going on where the odds that the hanging is not going to go through are much higher. The tension builds up very well, up to the crucial moment which is very convincing. A very similar story was used in another western "The Young Land"(1959), also with very good results.


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