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Category:    Home > Reviews > Western > Revenge > Convict Stage (1965/Fox)

Convict Stage (1965/Fox)

 

Picture: C+†††† Sound: C+†††† Extras: C†††† Film: B-

 

 

Lesley Selanderís 1965 Revenge Western Convict Stage is a far more interesting film that I expected as Ben Lattimore (Harry Lauter) is out to kill whoever killed his sister, but an experienced lawman (Don ďRedĒ Barry, who wrote the original story) thinks he knows better and tries to stop him from making mistakes that will get him killed too.

 

The mostly unknown cast is very good and actually gives the film a raw feel that makes it more convincing now than ever.It may seem like a familiar story, but it is done with a certain energy and freshness that make this worth seeing.This is one of the last monochrome Westerns from a big studio and with color TV and color TV Westerns on the air, this would usually be signs of a B-movie shoot, but the film is more grade A than B and a solid Western that holds up well over 40 years later.

 

The anamorphically enhanced 1.85 image was shot in nice black and white film stocks by cinematography veteran Gordon Avil, who shot the 70mm Billy The Kid back in 1930 and was Director of Photography for the TV hit Hoganís Heroes (reviewed elsewhere on this site), with its exceptional use of color.Avil had already done some TV work, but he could easily shoot for the big screen and that is why this looks so good.A 1.33 X 1 version is also included on the DVD with some more picture information, but a little less image richness.The Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo is a little better than the 2.0 Mono and it is a clean recording, right down to the good score by Richard LaSalle, a film veteran who scored many TV shows memorably.Now thatís an A-film!

 

Extras include three stills sections, pressbook with text enlargement capacity and the original theatrical trailer for this & five other Fox Westerns now on DVD.

 

 

-†† Nicholas Sheffo


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