Home Movies by Decade Movies - 1950s Drums across the River (1954)

Drums across the River (1954)

Crown City is a played-out mining town. Just a few yards away across the river there are vast reserves of gold but it lies in Ute Indian territory and it will take a brave man to incur the wrath of the tribe’s chief Ouray.

This very average Audie Murphy western is somewhat redeemed by nice 1950s Technicolor and a very short running time (74 minutes, including titles).

The plot – about how deceitful whites stole gold from native Americans – deserves a better treatment, but the baby-faced Murphy, a former war hero, makes a sympathetic leading man.

There’s good work, too, from snarling villain Lyle Bettger, grizzled Walter Brennan as Audie’s dad, and especially Hugh O’Brian, here beginning to show signs of star quality (He later played Wyatt Earp on television.)

Elsewhere, Lisa Gaye and Mara Corday are splendid period wenches.

Gary Brannon
Audie Murphy
Jennie Marlowe
Lisa Gaye
Frank Walker
Lyle Bettger
Sam Brannon
Walter Brennan
Mara Corday
Hugh O’Brian
Jay Silverheels
Sheriff Beal
Regis Toomey
Morris Ankrum
Jed Walker
James Anderson
Les Walker
George D Wallace
Billy Costa
Bob Steele
Ralph Costa
Lane Bradford
Emile Meyer
Red Knife
Ken Terrell

Nathan Juran