Filmed by legendary western director Budd Boetticher and based on a story by Elmore Leonard, THE TALL T is considered by many to be a classic of the western genre. Pat Brennan (Randolph Scott, Ride the High Country) is a former ranch hand trying to make it on his own. After losing his horse in a bet, he finds himself on a stagecoach with Willard (John Hubbard, The Cimarron Kid) and Doretta Mims (Maureen O'Sullivan, The Thin Man). When a pack of outlaws takes over the stagecoach and finds out that Doretta is the heir to a copper fortune, a hostage situation develops, and it's up to Brennan to save the day. Newly remastered.
Perhaps the grittiest and grimmest of the Randolph Scott-Budd Boetticher collaborations, THE TALL T was adapted by Burt Kennedy from the Elmore Leonard short story THE CAPTIVE. Scott plays a former ranch foreman who, along with newlyweds Maureen O'Sullivan and John Hubbard, is held hostage at a deserted stagecoach station by ruthless bandit Richard Boone and his henchmen Henry Silva and Skip Homeier. Since we already know that Boone has no qualms about killing a freckle-faced 10 year old boy, we shudder to think of what's in store for Scott and his fellow captives once Boone carries out his plan to rob the next stagecoach. In Boetticher's time-honored Mexican Standoff fashion, Scott bargains with Boone for the life of O'Sullivan, but his efforts are undercut by Hubbard's cowardly treachery. The film's sparse, carefully controlled tension level bursts into full-out bloodshed only minutes before the final fade-out. Curiously, the title THE TALL T is never explained at any time; certainly the "T" doesn't refer to Randolph Scott, whose character name is Pat Brennan.
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