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Terror in a Texas Town

Released Aug 25, 1958 1h 20m Western List
100% Tomatometer 6 Reviews 67% Audience Score 250+ Ratings When Swedish-American whaler George Hanson (Sterling Hayden) returns to his Texas hometown after 20 years at sea, he's shocked to learn that his father was murdered just two days prior. The feckless local sheriff (Tyler McVey) won't do anything about it, so George investigates on his own and discovers that an oil speculator (Sebastian Cabot) had his father killed for refusing to sell his land at an unfair price. Enraged, and armed only with a speargun, George goes looking for justice. Read More Read Less Watch on Fandango at Home Buy Now

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Terror in a Texas Town

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Critics Reviews

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Richard Propes TheIndependentCritic.com A Trumbo screenplay all the way. Rated: 3.0/4.0 Sep 26, 2020 Full Review Nicholas Bell IONCINEMA.com Arguably, its depiction of American's sour, rotten capitalistic core may be nothing new in the annals of the Western. But no one does it with such devilish relish and provocative panache as Trumbo, Young, and Lewis and the nightmare they conjure. Rated: 4/5 Sep 8, 2020 Full Review Michael E. Grost Classic Film and Television Blistering left wing Western, with unique surreal final showdown. Aug 9, 2007 Full Review Emanuel Levy EmanuelLevy.Com Rated: 3/5 Aug 3, 2005 Full Review Vadim Rizov Movie-Vault.com Rated: 7/10 Jun 19, 2003 Full Review Dennis Schwartz Dennis Schwartz Movie Reviews Had style and the expressions of an auteur filmmaker to make it standout from other westerns. Rated: A- Sep 26, 2001 Full Review Read all reviews

Audience Reviews

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Audience Member Another one it is well worth watching. Thank you should try it James Welch, Henderson, Arkansas most 23rd 2023. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 03/23/23 Full Review Audience Member Reinado do Terror (1958) 3,0 ⭐️ #MovieReview Homem rico em cidade usa de pistoleiro para reaver terras de colonos que tem petróleo. Nisso chega filho de colono e confronta capanga e ricaço. Parece um Western de baixo orçamento, mas é bom filme! Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 02/25/23 Full Review Audience Member This movie is a quiet achiever! Hayden's Swedish accent takes a few minutes of adjustment, but he plays the role with such conviction that the half-baked accent eventually endears us to him -- I feel if he had tried harder on the accent it would have severed the connection somewhat. Two scenes stand out; one in which a man is shot dead in front of his house, and a relative comes out, sobbing in grief -- their sorrow so enrages the sadist villain that he blasts five or six more holes in the dead body before leaving. Quite brutal for a film of its time. The other scene is the final showdown, particularly how it ends. Super abruptly! There are less than 10 seconds between the end of the showdown and the end of the film, but they are important. It deftly illustrates the fickle nature of communities living in servitude, however conscious they are of their situation. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 02/24/23 Full Review Audience Member Reminescent of the western style of classics, especially High Noon, and predating in many ways what would become the new language of the American B-movie, Terror in a Texas Town stars Hayden as a Swedish peace loving seaman who finds himself in Texas looking for revenge after he finds out his father was murdered. An admirable build up of tension leads to one of the most original final showdowns in the genre's history. Though people that have seen this film remember it fondly, Terror in a Texas Town still remains somewhat of a hidden gem. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 01/24/23 Full Review Audience Member Sterling Hayden is a tough Swede go goes out west to help father, only to find that's he's been killed by a land baron who wants the the local farmers' land. Joseph H. Lewis. brings his usual tough, no-nonsense style to the western that features a smart script by Dalton Trumbo, who at the time was not credited and sold the script through "front" Ben Perry. But to say the story of a Scandinavian whaler coming to his fathers farm to find it being terrorized by Sebastion Cabot as off-beat is a huge understatement. But it's really the off-beat nature and unusual aspects of the film that set it apart from the hundred of other westerns that told the same story. The film also has a pretty original showdown as well. A must see for fans of Sterling Hayden. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 01/31/23 Full Review Audience Member A small town in Texas is being terrorized by a greedy oil-man, Ed McNeil, who is attempting to force everyone off their land which happens to have tons of oil beneath it. One day a young Swedish man, George Hansen, shows up in town to find his father, but discovers he has been killed. Ted just left his life as a whaler to finally settle down and after learning about his father's death, he refuses to leave his land and will not rest until he finds out who is responsible for his father's death. This is just an insanely unique, beautifully shot and directed western that has so much to offer. The character of George Hansen is such a great protagonist. Being a Swedish immigrant, his English is very basic to the point that he comes off slow, while still being very intelligent. His character is driven and consumed that he doesn't back down, never fearing death, even though Ed McNeil's goons are plentiful. He isn't the only great character as Johnny Crale, Ed McNeil's right hand man, is also well developed, as our main villain, in terms of immediate danger. The actor who plays him (Nedrick Young) seemed to be channeling his inner Humphrey Bogart, as he's a cool, slick, scary individual. The film doesn't shy away from any taboo about immigrants treatment, instead it presents a much more realistic portrayal of how it probably was. Aesthetically the film has some great compositions showcasing some wild depth of frame and nice shadows. As far as the pacing goes, it flies by with lots of great tension throughout to really set-up the ending. In one word, BADASS. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 02/17/23 Full Review Read all reviews
Terror in a Texas Town

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Movie Info

Synopsis When Swedish-American whaler George Hanson (Sterling Hayden) returns to his Texas hometown after 20 years at sea, he's shocked to learn that his father was murdered just two days prior. The feckless local sheriff (Tyler McVey) won't do anything about it, so George investigates on his own and discovers that an oil speculator (Sebastian Cabot) had his father killed for refusing to sell his land at an unfair price. Enraged, and armed only with a speargun, George goes looking for justice.
Director
Joseph H. Lewis
Producer
Frank N. Seltzer
Screenwriter
Dalton Trumbo
Production Co
Seltzer Films
Genre
Western
Original Language
English
Release Date (Theaters)
Aug 25, 1958, Limited
Release Date (Streaming)
Sep 16, 2008
Runtime
1h 20m
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