Forty Guns (1957) - Rotten Tomatoes

Forty Guns1957

Forty Guns (1957)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Forty Guns Photos

Movie Info

This Sam Fuller western contains elements and production techniques that were to show up in spaghetti westerns of the '60s. Fuller's West was a violent, lawless place, lacking the moral grounding found in typical genre entries. Forty Guns was not well received by American film critics, but in Europe it is a revered work, particularly in France where Fuller has become a cult figure and is considered one of the most important and innovative of post WW II American filmmakers. The story centers on Barbara Stanwyck who plays a powerful female landowner who basically runs an entire Arizona county with an iron fist. Her decrees are enforced by a small army of cowboy henchmen and she meets with little opposition from the willow-spined sheriff and the terrorized residents. Things go just as she wants until a gunslinger-turned-pacifistic-US Marshal and his two brothers ride to town to usurp Stanwyck and her psychotic brother. Once there, one of the brothers falls in love with the lovely town gunsmith. Their wedding day is destroyed when Stanwyck's brother shoots the groom, causing the Marshal to forsake his vow to never again use his gun.


Barbara Stanwyck
as Jessica Drummond
Barry Sullivan
as Griff Bonnell
Dean Jagger
as Sheriff Ned Logan
Gene Barry
as Wes Bonnell
John Ericson
as Brockie Drummond
Robert Dix
as Chico Bonnell
Jack 'Jidge' Carroll
as Barney Cashman
Jack "Judge" Carroll
as Bamey Cashman
Gerald Milton
as Shotgun Spangler
Eve Brent Ashe
as Louvenia Spangler
Hank Worden
as John Chisum
Chuck Roberson
as Howard Swain
Chuck Hayward
as Charlie Savage
Sandra Wirth
as Chico's Girl
Paul Dubov
as Judge Macey
View All

Critic Reviews for Forty Guns

All Critics (14) | Top Critics (1)

Offers the anticipated measures of doomed love and sudden death but surprises with its dramatic richness.

February 16, 2015 | Full Review…

It's clear that the double entendres will continue to fly at a fast and furious pace in writer-director Samuel Fuller's rowdy Western saga.

December 22, 2018 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

An early example of genre revisionism, but the tone isn't always so serious thanks to some of the most overt innuendo ever put on screen.

July 6, 2015 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Fuller's comic book world is a complete artistic creation, a place where men were MEN and women could take a bullet now and then.

February 1, 2010 | Rating: 5/5 | Full Review…

Here is Sam Fuller in top gear, as writer, director and producer, with a Western that is solidly crafted and brilliantly cast. Barbara Stanwyck is at her peak, although her peak lasted decades

September 18, 2008 | Full Review…

... sexual energy and psychotic violence that explodes onscreen in staccato editing, darting camerawork, and the maddest expressions of love this side of Duel in the Sun.

July 5, 2005 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Forty Guns

Great western with some really nice unexpected twists. Love that gun barrel shot. Looks like Sam Fuller beat James Bond to the punch.

Ken Stachnik
Ken Stachnik

Super Reviewer

Although the story didn't really appeal to me, I liked how it was filmed. The shots were diverse and creative, it reminded me a little of Hitchcock's way of filming sometimes. I wish Barbara had a bigger part in it, I can't get enough of this woman. She has a very powerful appearance, that never fails to captivate me.

Saskia D.
Saskia D.

Super Reviewer

One wacky-doodlely Freudian Western. "She's a high ridin' woman with a whip . . . But if someone could break her and take her whip away, Someone big, someone strong, someone tall, You may find that the woman with a whip only a woman after all." "Get a doctor. She'll live."

Bob Stinson
Bob Stinson

Super Reviewer

Forty Guns Quotes

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