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Johnny Guitar (Republic 1954, Joan Crawford, Mercedes McCambridge)

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In Johnny Guitar women wear the pants (and guns) in what is one of the oddest, and most rewarding, Westerns ever brought to the screen. Iconoclast Nicholas Ray corralled his quarreling costars, Joan Crawford and Mercedes McCambridge, long enough to get them brawling on-screen. McCambridge wants saloon owner Crawford to take her bar trade elsewhere or face a lynching. Crawford’s determined to stay, and when mysterious guitar-playing Brady (Lawrence Tierney’s younger brother) gets involved, the six-shooters come out?in the hands of the ladies.

Mercedes McCambridge, who plays the wicked villainess in Johnny Guitar, put her penchant for evil to further good use in 1973 when she provided the devilish voice of the possessed Linda Blair in The Exorcist.

production details
USA | Republic | 110 minutes | 1954

Director: Nicholas Ray
Producer: Herbert J. Yates
Cinematography: Harry Stradling
Editor: Richard L. Van Enger
Script: Philip Yordan

cast
Joan Crawford as Vienna
Mercedes McCambridge as Emma Small
Ernest Borgnine as Bart Lonergan
Paul Fix as Eddie
Ward Bond as John McIvers
Sterling Hayden as Johnny ‘Guitar’ Logan
John Carradine as Old Tom
Scott Brady as Dancin’ Kid
Royal Dano as Corey
Ian MacDonald as Pete
Frank Ferguson as Marshal Williams
Rhys Williams as Mr. Andrews
Ben Cooper as Turkey Ralston
Will Wright as Ned – Bank Teller (uncredited)
Denver Pyle as Posseman (uncredited)
Dennis Hopper as uncredited

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