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Billy the Kid

  • News and current affairs
  • Western
  • 1930
  • King Vidor
  • 95 mins

Summary

The legend of William H Bonney, known as Billy the Kid, who was allegedly shot by Sheriff Pat Garrett in 1881. Wild West experts and historians discuss how much of the generally accepted version of events is really true.

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Review

A star rating of 4 out of 5.

The first sound film about Billy the Kid tells a now familiar story of his friendship with a kindly British rancher and relentless pursuit of the man's killers who have the law in their pocket. It shows its age at times, but director King Vidor presents the story in an austere, anti-romantic fashion, with a realistic regard for the effects of hunger and thirst on men under siege - and for the pain and finality of violent death, as when the previously comical Roscoe Ates is riddled with bullets in a valiant attempt to bring water to Billy and others. Johnny Mack Brown makes an excellent Kid, while Wallace Beery is restrained and believable as the fair-minded sheriff Pat Garrett. The film was shot with alternative endings, tragic and upbeat; it is the latter which is now usually shown.

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Credits

Cast

rolename
BillyJohnny Mack Brown
BarrettWallace Beery
ClaireKay Johnson
SwensonKarl Dane
TunstonWyndham Standing
McSweenRussell Simpson
Mrs McSweenBlanche Frederici
Old StuffRoscoe Ates

Crew

rolename
DirectorKing Vidor

Details

Languages
English
Formats
Black and white
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