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Tom Horn Review

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A renowned former army scout is hired by ranchers to hunt down rustlers but finds himself on trial for the murder of a boy when he carries out his job too well.

★★★★★

An underrated, gloomy Western that was McQueen’s second-to-last film. Based on the career of a rustler-cum-lawman who came to a bad end and was hanged, this is one of those Westerns that show old-fashioned cowboy individuals losing out to crass corporate interests. It opens with the hero humiliated by thugs in the pay of braggart boxer Gentleman Jim Corbett, whose bogus showbiz heroism contrasts ill with Horn’s quiet frontier skills, then has him hired by ranchers to bring in a band of rustlers, only to prove so brutally effective that his employers disown him and have him framed for murder. This benefits from a salty script by Thomas McGuane and has an achingly moving dying fall of a performance from a drawn and harried McQueen.

Above average Western