Gunfight at Comanche Creek Film Details
Overview: In 1875 a murderous outlaw gang breaks criminals from jail, uses them to help in crimes, and then kills them for the reward, when it goes high enough.
Tagline: Gunslinging Man-Hunter… Audie Murphy as a ruthless detective out to smash the West’s most notorious outlaws!
Review: Veteran director Frank MacDonald’s “Gunfight at Comanche Creek” qualifies as an adequate but unexceptional western about an undercover detective trying to flush out a gang of outlaws. This lackluster remake of director Paul Landres’ 1957 hold-up thriller “Last of the Bad Men” casts Audie Murphy in the role originated by George Montgomery. Although an element of mystery about the identity of the leader of the outlaw gang generates a modicum of interest, “Three Stooges” scenarist Edward Bernds has penned a thoroughly routine screenplay and cluttered it up with unnecessary narration by Reed Hadley that adds little to the action. The only thing of significance about this modest but well-made sagebrusher is that long-time heavy Jan Merlin plays a good guy who sacrifices himself when his friend is caught between a rock and a hard place. If you look carefully, this Allied Artists release used the same town set that appeared as Virginia City in the NBC-TV show “Bonanza.” No attribution to the Montgomery film appears in the credits to “Gunfight at Comanche Creek,” but the plot about a gang of bank robbers who use a notorious felon with a price on his head as their front man makes this an unmistakable remake. None of the writers from the first film receive any credit as source material on this one. Murphy walks through his role as National Detective Agency operative Bob ‘Gif’ Gifford aka Judd Tanner. After the National Detective Agency figures out what the outlaws are doing, they send in Gifford with gold certificates from a robbery. He flashes the loot around in Comanche Creek and is promptly arrested by Marshal Dan Shearer (John Hubbard of “Duel at Diablo”) who locks him up. No sooner has Gifford been locked up than the villains spring him. It seems that they prefer to use wanted felons because once they run the bounty up on their heads, they can kill them and turn them in for the reward. The National Detective Agency sends another agent to keep tabs on Gifford. Nielson (Jan Merlin of “Hell Bent for Leather”) hides out in the rocks overlooking the line shack where the outlaws conceal themselves. Eventually, Nielson is caught by Amos Troop (DeForrest Kelly of “The Law and Jake Wade”) and the rest of the gang. Troop sticks a revolver in Gifford’s fist and forces him to shoot Nielson. Of course, if Gifford refuses to shoot Nielson, Troop and his cronies will know that he is detective. Instead, Nielson turns and charges Jed Hayden (Adam Williams of “The Big Heat”) and Jed guns him down in cold blood. One of the other outlaws, likable Bill ‘Kid’ Carter (Ben Cooper of “Johnny Guitar”), learns that Gifford is a detective and decides to aid him. Unfortunately, Carter doesn’t get far before he is gunned down, too. By this time, the reward money on our hero has risen to $4-thousand and Troop and company are itching to cash Gifford in, but things are complicated when they abduct another outlaw. They break another outlaw out of jail, Buck (Tim Graham) after they clobber Marshal Shearer, and then they learn that there is an undercover agent in their midst. During the big finale in Comanche Creek, they plan not only to rob the bank but also eliminate both Gifford and Buck. However, additional agents of the National Detective Agency arrive in town and sling lead alongside Marshal Shearer when the outlaws try to ride out. The mystery as to the identity of the outlaw gang leader is resolved. As it turns out, none other than Marshal Shearer, a man that the detectives did not suspect, is revealed as the inside man. When he gets a chance, Shearer seizes local saloon owner Abbie Stevens (Colleen Miller of “The Rawhide Years”) and uses her as a human shield, but Gifford does not allow him to escape. Interestingly, Amos Troop survives and is arrested. “Gunfight at Comanche Creek” ranks as little more than a potboiler and Murphy spends most of his time without a gun in his grip. Long-time Robert Aldrich lenser Joseph Biroc makes this mediocre western look better than it deserves and the best that can be said of MacDonald is that “Gunfight at Comanche Creek” does not wear out its welcome.
Duration: 90 min
Genre: Crime, Western
Also known as: Duel au Colorado,Gunfight at Comanche Creek,Arroyo Comanche,Batalha em Riacho Comanche,Gun Fight at Comanche Creek,Luptă la Comanche Creek,Comanche Creek,Im Sattel ritt der Tod,Renpô hoankan,Gunfight,The Great Gunfighter,Duelo no Rio Diablo,Revolvermannen från Colorado,Kesytön länsi,Sfida nella valle dei Comanche,Revolverhelten fra Colorado,連邦保安官,Imperio de audaces,Fúria de Brutos,Se kathe sfaira itan to onoma tou