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Blood on the Moon (1948)

Passed | | Western | 21 November 1948 (USA)
Unemployed cowhand Jim Garry is hired by his dishonest friend Tate Riling as muscle in a dispute between homesteaders and cattleman John Lufton.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (adaptation) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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...
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...
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Carol Lufton
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Milo Sweet
Clifton Young ...
Joe Shotten
...
Frank Reardon
...
...
Ted Elser (as Richard Powers)
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Nels Titterton
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Bart Daniels
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Storyline

When a shady-looking stranger rides into town to join his old friend it is assumed he is a hired gun. But as the new man comes to realise the unlawful nature of his buddy's business and the way the homesteaders are being used, the two men draw apart to become sworn enemies. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

COLD NERVE AND HOT LEAD! (original 22x28 Card B-all caps) See more »

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 November 1948 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Nacht in der Prärie  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Shortly after this movie was made, the new boss of RKO, Howard Hughes, terminated Barbara Bel Geddes' contract, saying she wasn't sexy enough. See more »

Quotes

Jim Garry: [after Barden kills Reardon] Why did you do it?
Kris Barden: I always wanted to shoot one of you. He was the handiest.
See more »

Connections

Featured in 100 Years of the Hollywood Western (1994) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Range Feud To Cover A Cattle Theft
13 April 2010 | by See all my reviews

The novels of Luke Short paint a dark picture of the old west and Hollywood has made good use of them in making some really good westerns. Blood On The Moon is one of the best screen adaptations of one of his stories.

A quick cursory glance of the films made from his stories, Ramrod, Ambush, Station West, Vengeance Valley, Coroner Creek all of them are pretty dark, almost noir like stories set in the old west. Blood On The Moon has Robert Mitchum as a cowboy sent for by his friend Robert Preston to be part of scheme to grab the herd of cattle baron Tom Tully.

Not that Preston wants to do a little honest rustling, no his is a complicated plan involving getting the small ranchers and homesteaders riled up against Tully and getting a small range war started. He's even seduced one of Tully's daughters, Phyllis Thaxter, into betraying her father with promises of love and undying affection.

All of this is a bit too much for Mitchum for whom it is alluded was quite the hellraiser in earlier times, but now is just sick of it all. Tully's other daughter Barbara Bel Geddes is checking him out if he would only break with Preston.

When discussing this film in his book about Robert Mitchum, Lee Server makes the point that this film was far from what RKO planned for its star. Originally Mitchum was to be the white hat cowboy hero and successor as its B picture western star when Tim Holt went off to World War II. Little did they dream at RKO back in 1944 when Mitchum made his first with top billing, Nevada that he would be in this kind of western and do it so successfully.

Preston had finished with his contract at Paramount and was now freelancing. We now know him primarily for The Music Man, but in his early film days he played many a villain and this one is a study in malevolence. His superficial charm even carries menace with it.

Blood On The Moon enters that list of really top notch westerns that were originally authored by Luke Short. Try not to miss it when broadcast.


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