Rails into Laramie – 1954

Technicolor film from 1954

The film is Directed by Jesse Hibbs
and stars John Payne, Mari Blanchard, Dan Duryea, Joyce Mackenzie, Barton MacLane, James Griffith, Lee Van Cleef, Myron Healey

Jesse Hibbs’s Rails Into Laramie (1954) is a rarely seen 50s Western with a really terrific cast – let’s hope that the DVD release will change that.

This is an above average Universal western. Special mention must go to Lee Van Cleef as a menacing, trigger happy bad man – his usual role although a very early, and brief one, Mari Blanchard plays a saloon girl with a heart of gold and James Griffith is a bumbling ineffectual lawman.

Action scenes are well staged – particularly those on the trains – the photography is first class and the Technicolor beautiful as always.

The story concerns rebel soldier, John Payne, who is assigned by his commander in chief to find who is behind the slow progress on the building of a railway line in Laramie. He finds drink plentiful among the railway workers. He also meets the beautiful, Mari Blanchard, an ex dancer and owner of a saloon – along with Dan Duryea, an ex-colleague of Payne who is behind it all.

Dan Duryea is the booze supplier who along with his hoodlum, Lee Van Cleef, deliver alcohol to the labourers who are building the railroad.

At the end a thrilling fight takes place on board a train.

John Payne with one of the trains and the driver – a scene from the film

Mari Blanchard in a threatening situation
John Payne with Dan Duryea
John ;Pyane with Mari Blanchard
Dan Duryea getting some assistance
John Payne and Dan Duryea
Dan Duryea and Mari Blancard having fun listening to the Radio between takes on the set of the film

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