Showdown (1973)

Genres - Comedy, Western  |   Sub-Genres - Comedy Western  |   Release Date - Jun 20, 1973 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 94 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - PG
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Review by Craig Butler

Showdown is not the kind of movie that one can get very worked up about, and that's its big problem. It's amiable enough, so one doesn't feel angry about its shortcomings, but it doesn't inspire any passionate positive feelings either. Mostly, it just passes by the on the screen, making little impression. With a better screenplay, of course, it would have been a better movie. The ingredients -- two former friends must become enemies due to the different choices they made in life -- are familiar but could be the basis of a gripping, entertaining story. In Showdown, it's just a premise that doesn't go anywhere new or show viewers anything they haven't seen numerous times before. There's nothing revelatory about the performances of stars Dean Martin and Rock Hudson either. Martin ambles his way through the film without a great deal of commitment, and while Hudson is definitely better, he still doesn't really give his all to the part. And there's a distinct lack of chemistry between the two, something which this kind of story absolutely has to have to work. George Seaton's direction is fine but undistinguished. Susan Clark is quite good in the nothing role of the wife, and some of the location work is quite stunning, but neither of these can lift Showdown above the ordinary.