A quick-witted drifter wanders into a lawless town in the midst of a gold rush. Shocked by the prices of food and meals he reluctantly takes the job of sheriff by amazing the Mayor with his lightning quick, dead eye pistol accuracy. He makes the town council know that he is really just passing through on his way to Australia and he will pull up and leave anytime he chooses (including at the first sign of real trouble). His first day on the job he takes on the biggest, meanest ranching family and meets his klutzy love interest.
"He stuck his finger in Your what?"
A very smart, funny take-off on Rio Bravo. James Garner is at his best as a guy just heading for Australia who stumbles into a town filled with some of the most eccentric people ever to live in the Wild West.
Whereas your typical lawman uses his guns to settle disputes, Jake McCullough uses his wits. No bars in the jail? Just spritz some red paint on the floor and say it was from the last guy who tried to escape. Want to take an afternoon to look for gold? Just handcuff your prisoner to the potbelly stove.
Everybody in this film has a chance to shine. Praise must go to Jack Elam as the 2nd fastest gun in the town (After Jake, that is.) Also praiseworthy is Joan Hackett and Harry Morgan as the wackiest Father and Daughter you'll ever see.
Three Pictures, Cherokee Productions, United Artists by Burt Kennedy, William Bowers.
Stars: James Garner, Joan Hackett, Walter Brennan.
Genres: Comedy, Western
Keywords: deputy sheriff mayor australia shootout western town
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