DAYS OF KIOWA JONES, THE (TV
MOVIE) (director: Alex March;
screenwriters: from the novel by Clifton Adams/Frank
Fenton/Robert E. Thompson;
cinematographer: Ellsworth Fredericks;
editor: John McSweeney; music: Samuel Matlovsky; cast:
Sal Mineo (Bobby Jack Wilkes), Robert Horton (Kiowa
Jones), Diane Baker (Amelia Rathmore), Gary Merrill
(Marshal Sam Duncan), Nehemiah Persoff (Skoda), Robert H.
Harris (Dobie, Hangman), Dean Stanton (Jelly), Lonny
Chapman (Roy), Zalman King (Jesse), Val Avery (Morgan),
Royal Dano (Otto); Runtime: 100; MPAA Rating: NR;
producers: David Karr/Max E. Youngstein;
"Dreadful TV movie Western."
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
Dreadful TV movie Western directed without passion by Alex March ("The Amazing Captain Nemo"/"The Big Bounce"/"Paper Lion"). It's based on the novel by Clifton Adams and is written by Frank Fenton and Robert E. Thompson.
On the western prairie,
cowboy drifter Kiowa
Jones (Robert Horton) stumbles upon a dying
the pox, and two handcuffed prisoners, the mad dog
Billy the Kid wannabe serial killer of 20, Bobby
Jack Wilkes ( Sal Mineo), and the
gypsy tarot card fortune teller Skoda (Nehemiah
Persoff), the killer of his young
wife because he loved her. The marshal
deputizes Kiowa and orders him to bring the prisoners
to Fort Smith to be hanged, even if he dies. Kiowa
shows no interest in the $1,000 reward for Wilkes and
no interest when Wilkes offers $2,000 to set him free.
When the marshal dies the reluctant cowboy keeps his
promise, but runs into trouble from other bounty
hunters who try to kill him to get the reward money
from the killer. Along by wagon comes gritty spinster
Amelia Rathmore (Diane Baker), on
her way to teach Indians, who saves Kiowa from the
attackers and gets roped into helping the hunky
moronic but straight-shooting aimless cowboy bring his
prisoners to justice.
dull pic drags on seemingly forever, as it keeps
tacking on difficulties in keeping Wilkes alive as a
prisoner. The predictable romance comes to fruition in
the long overdue third act. During the film's many
snooze-inducing moments, we can count on Sal Mineo to
laugh insanely and thereby give us a wake-up call.
REVIEWED ON 4/22/2012 GRADE: C
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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