Steve Sinclair is a world-weary former gunslinger, now living as a peaceful rancher. Things go wrong when his wild younger brother Tony arrives on the scene with his new gun and pending bride and former saloon girl Joan Blake.
Granted a small plot of land in a lush valley and a start of cattle by the generous landowner and cattle baron, Dennis Deneen, the once-feared gunslinger, Steve Sinclair, has renounced violence, intent on keeping the peace in the community. However, the sudden arrival of Steve's much younger brother, Tony, and his saloon singer fiancée, Joan Blake, will pave the way for a bitter rivalry between siblings, as the volatile young gunfighter craves to prove his mettle. More and more, Tony's tricked-out custom six-shooter demands blood. Is Tony destined to be the lord of the rich valley?Written by
A first score was written and recorded by Jeff Alexander but had to be replaced due to extensive re-cutting. See more »
As Tony tells the men in the bunk house that he is taking control of the Sinclare ranch, his neckerchief is predominantly in front, with a the tails hanging down the front of his open shirt. After the fistfight with Steve it moves a bit more to the front. The scene cuts after Steve walks out the door, the men release Tony, and he bends down to pick up his cowboy hat, but now the neckerchief has been twisted around to the far side of his neck, with the knot practically on the right side of his head. See more »
You better open your eyes because I'm not just your kid brother anymore. I'm a full partner and I ride abreast of you. And you're not sitting on me anymore.
I never sat on you; I never tied you down! I only wanted one thing in my life and that was to see you rise up. You only got up as high as your gun belt. And that's a low height for a man.
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As he got older Robert Taylor got cast in more and more westerns as did so many of his contemporary stars. His first western was in 1941 as Billy the Kid and had Taylor had his way, he would have done a lot more of them sooner. He lived on a ranch in his later years with his second wife Ursula Thiess and their kids and he definitely looked home on the range.
He plays an older and wiser gunfighter like Gregory Peck's character of the film of the same name who would like to settle down and with the help of Donald Crisp, the big cattle ranch owner in the valley where Taylor owns his spread, he's trying to make an honest living.
The problem is that Taylor has a younger brother, a wild kid played by John Cassavetes, who wants to emulate his brother or at least the older version of his brother. And he causes a great deal of problems before the end of the film.
Cassavetes has an interesting part. He could have played it just like Skip Homeier did in The Gunfighter, a punk without any redeeming qualities. But he has to convey enough of a sense of decency so that we understand why Taylor just won't give up on him. I think he succeeds admirably.
The most interesting best of the supporting roles belongs to Royal Dano. He's a bitter, troubled man himself. His father owned a strip of land and abandoned it 20 years ago. Dano moves back on it and tries to assert his rights. In a situation that could probably be worked out either by men of good will or an honest court, neither is available. The result is tragedy all around. I think that this was probably Dano's best screen performance.
Taylor and Cassavetes offer an interesting contrast between a studio personality who learned to become a good actor and a New York based method actor. But that's not the only reason one should see Saddle the Wind. A good, but very grim western is the reason.
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