Vengeance Valley

Vengeance Valley

Director: Richard Thorpe

Cast: Burt Lancaster, Robert Walker, Joanne Dru

     
 

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The old "Cain and Abel" plot device is redefined within Western terms in MGM's Vengeance Valley. Burt Lancaster stars as ranch-hand Owen Daybright, who has been raised as a son by rancher Arch Stroble (Ray Collins). Stroble's natural son Lee (Robert Walker) has always been envious of Owen, who in turn has spent most of his life pulling Lee out of trouble and

Overview

The old "Cain and Abel" plot device is redefined within Western terms in MGM's Vengeance Valley. Burt Lancaster stars as ranch-hand Owen Daybright, who has been raised as a son by rancher Arch Stroble (Ray Collins). Stroble's natural son Lee (Robert Walker) has always been envious of Owen, who in turn has spent most of his life pulling Lee out of trouble and keeping the boy's misdeeds a secret from the elder Stroble. When Lee fathers an illegitimate child, he tries to shift the responsibility on Owen, leading to a life-threatening confrontation with the vengeance-seeking brothers of the baby's mother (Sally Forrest). There's plenty more plot twists before virtue finally triumphs. Joanne Dru co-stars as Lee's long-suffering wife Jen, who harbors a secret yen for Owen. Since lapsing into public domain, Vengeance Valley has shown up with increasing frequency on cable television; it has also been made available in a narrated version for the visually impaired.

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Burt Lancaster's debut Western, Vengeance Valley is a so-so picture that has some good individual elements in it. One of these is Lancaster himself. Although he doesn't seem totally at ease in the role, he has the commanding presence that is required of this kind of film. Lancaster seems to be trying to find a way to add more depth to his part and coming up a little short, but his noble efforts in no way are damaging. Even better is Robert Walker, assaying one of his best rotten-to-the-core but able to project an amiable façade roles. The combination of friction and chemistry between the two actors is also notable. Sally Forrest and Joanne Dru also turn in good performances, if hemmed in by the lack of development in their characters. And there's some magnificent scenery, beautifully captured by cinematographer George Folsey. On the down side, Irving Ravetch's screenplay never succeeds in being as thoughtful as it seems to think it is, and much of the film gets mired down in talky scenes that don't have the desired impact. Director Richard Thorpe handles the action sequences well, but is much less successful with the dramatics of the storyline. As a result, the pacing lags and there's a noticeable lack o tension which eventually drags the film down.

Product Details

Release Date:
08/31/2004
UPC:
0798622314420
Original Release:
1951
Rating:
PG
Source:
Westlake Budget
Time:
1:28:00

Special Features

Biographies; Filmographies; Photo gallery; Interactive menus; Jump to scene; Dolby sound; PC/MAC compatible

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Burt Lancaster Owen Daybright
Robert Walker Lee Strobie
Joanne Dru Jen Strobie
Sally Forrest Lily Fasken
John Ireland Hub Fasken
Carleton Carpenter Hewie
Ray Collins Arch Strobie
Hugh O'Brian Dick Fasken
Will Wright Mr. Willoughby
Grace Mills Mrs. Burke
Jim Hayward Sheriff Con Alvis
James Harrison Orv Easterly
Stanley Andrews Mead Calhoun
Margaret Bert Mrs. Calhoun
Paul E. Burns Dr. Irwin
Roy Butler Man
Ted de Corsia Herb Backett
Harvey B. Dunn Dealer
Tom Fadden Obie Rune
Al Ferguson Actor
Robert Griffin Cal
Norman Leavitt Actor
John R. McKee Player
Monte Montague Actor
Glenn Strange Dave Allard
Dan White Actor
Bob Wilke Actor
Louis Nicoletti Cowhand

Technical Credits
Richard Thorpe Director
Malcolm Brown Art Director
George Folsey Cinematographer
Cedric Gibbons Art Director
Rudolph G. Kopp Score Composer
Nicholas Nayfack Producer
Conrad A. Nervig Editor
Walter Plunkett Costumes/Costume Designer
Irving Ravetch Screenwriter

Scene Index

Side #1 --
2. Chapter 2 [6:39]
3. Chapter 3 [7:06]
4. Chapter 4 [9:44]
5. Chapter 5 [4:42]
6. Chapter 6 [9:01]
7. Chapter 7 [3:57]
8. Chapter 8 [7:39]
9. Chapter 9 [8:11]
10. Chapter 10 [7:32]
11. Chapter 11 [5:09]
12. Chapter 12 [9:48]
13. Chapter 13 [1:23]

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