In one of the finest examples of western melodramas, Theron is emotionally tortured by his parents' frigid marriage. Before he was born, his father had an affair with a local woman that resulted in an illegitimate son. Damaged by his mother's scorn and his father's callousness, Theron carries on his father's legacy by mistreating his own girlfriend. His impoverished half-brother Rafe grew up in the shadow of his spoiled brother. Unlike Theron, Rafe comes to terms with his brother, his absent father and the life that was denied him. Superb performances by all.