Duel in the Sun

Critics Consensus

No consensus yet.



Total Count: 20


Audience Score

User Ratings: 3,488
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Movie Info

In this film, Jennifer Jones stars as half-breed Pearl Chavez, whom everyone has tagged as a "bad girl." She is taken into the home of wealthy, greedy rancher McCanles. Almost immediately, Pearl becomes the object of an emotional tug-of-war between McCanles' virtuous son Jesse and wicked ne'er-do-well offspring Lewt.


Jennifer Jones
as Pearl Chavez
Gregory Peck
as Lewton "Lewt" McCanles
Joseph Cotten
as Jesse McCanles
Lionel Barrymore
as Senator Jackson McCanles
Lillian Gish
as Laura Belle McCanles
Walter Huston
as The Sin Killer
Herbert Marshall
as Scott Chavez
Charles Bickford
as Sam Pierce
Joan Tetzel
as Helen Langford
Harry Carey
as Lem Smoot
Otto Kruger
as Mr. Langford
Sidney Blackmer
as The Lover
Tilly Losch
as Mrs. Chavez
Griff Barnett
as The Jailer
Lane Chandler
as Captain, US Cavalry
Elizabeth Lloyd Shaw
as Barbecue Caller
Si Jenks
as Dancer at Barbecue
Hank Worden
as Dancer at Barbecue
Rose Plummer
as Dancer at Barbecue
Lee Phelps
as Engineer
Al Taylor
as Man at Barbecue
Orson Welles
as Narrator
Tom Dillon
as Engineer
Bob McKenzie
as Bartender
Johnny Bond
as Hand at Barbeque
Charles Dingle
as Sheriff Hardy
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Critic Reviews for Duel in the Sun

All Critics (20) | Top Critics (4)

Audience Reviews for Duel in the Sun

  • Jan 01, 2014
    Originally I had no intentions of seeing this, but, due to the fact that it really angered the Catholic Church back in the day, and the fact that Martin Scorsese, known for his great taste, holds this in high regard (it was the first film he ever saw), I finally got curious and decided to give it a watch and... ...frankly this film is kind of a joke. It's a big, grand, melodramatic western romance that tries to be the western equivalent of Gone With The Wind, and doesn't quite make it there. This is a grand and gorgeous film, but it's also an overlong, overblown, and rather silly soap opera. The plot follows a half breed beauty named Pearl who goes to live with some wealthy relatives after her father is executed for killing his unfaithful wife. Pearl doesn't get on too well with the patriarch, but when it comes to his two sons, well, that's a different story. She falls in love with one, and in lust with the other, with the bulk of the film being a sordid love triangle that, sue, in the mid 40s probably was scandalous due to the sexual tensions and innuendos, but today comes off as tame, and really ridiculous and silly. The film has some okay performances though, like Jennifer Jones as Pearl (though she's not really that believable as a half-breed) and Gregory Peck and Joseph Cotton as the two brothers Pearl is torn between. Lionel Barrymore and lillian Gish are also around, and they help elevate the material some, but even then this is still a bit of a mess, though at least an ambitious one. The film does look great though, with some stunning cinematography and camera work, as well as some decent music,. Unfortunately, this is a very dated picture that's also quite boring. Maybe if this were far shorter it would be a lot better. All in all, I can give this some respect on a technical level, and a bit in the acting area, but overall I can't say I totally liked this.
    Chris W Super Reviewer
  • Aug 07, 2013
    Yes, the Jennifer Jones-Gregory Peck stuff is a little over the top but this film is incredibly entertaining. Though not intentionally funny, this is grade A comedy.
    John B Super Reviewer
  • Mar 14, 2012
    A Western soap opera played as if it were Cecil B. DeMille's Ten Commandments, with every iota of the accompanying self-importance and then some, but with only the barest bones of a plot and script. Unintentionally laugh worthy and yet hard not to watch, like a over emotional drunk acquaintance crying over a breakup. "She ain't nor never was worth yer tears, friend."
    Kevin M. W Super Reviewer
  • May 12, 2011
    Operatic and over-the-top at times but with great otherwordly photography and good acting.
    George M Super Reviewer

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