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Bullet For A Badman

1964 | 16:9 Widescreen | Color | Quality: Excellent

Audie Murphy

Darren McGavin


Audie Murphy plays Logan Keliher, an ex-Texas Ranger who has to interrupt his peaceful life to strap on the guns again when his former friend and fellow Ranger-turned-outlaw Sam Ward (Darren McGavin) suddenly appears back on the scene in violent fashion, heading up a brazen bank robbery. Ward has ulterior motives, however, having a huge ax to grind on account that Logan married his ex-wife and raised his son as his own - and he makes it no secret that he plans to kill his old friend. Logan rises to the challenge and heads up a posse of colorful characters to hunt Ward down, but it soon becomes clear that they are more interested in getting their hands on the stolen loot than bringing Ward in alive. Eventually Logan does capture his old friend, and while normally the capture of the villain would be the end of the story, here it is just the beginning; the two former friends must find a way out of Apache territory all the time knowing that the posse could turn on them at any moment in an attempt to take the loot for themselves!

Don't let the short runtime or label of 'B movie' fool you here - neither gives a clue to just how good and chock full of interest Bullet for a Badman is. Interesting characters are the key to this film, and Audie Murphy gives a solid performance playing the conflicted ex-lawman who tried to do the right thing by taking care of his friend's family only to have the situation blow up in his face. McGavin plays the best sort of villain - one who is not totally evil and might indeed have a legitimate bone to pick. There is much to enjoy here from a character perspective as regards the human condition. The posse contains an excellent mixture of characters, all well portrayed, and lovely actress Ruta Lee adds some interest playing McGavin's girl. Jealousy, vengeance, greed, love, hate and redemption, all get a turn in the Willingham's screenplay, and throw in some hostile Apaches, shoot outs, twists and turns among the characters, all backdropped against beautiful scenery, and Bullet for a Badman delivers as a satisfying western leading us to a beauty of an ending!

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