Cinema: Back-Room Ballad

The grizzled old Westerner stares longingly at the Gila monster. Reaching slowly and cautiously down, the prospector has the lizard shot right out of his hand. "You peckerwoods just raised hell with our supper," he complains as two grungy rounders advance on him. "It's just like you said, Hogue," says one, "there's enough water for two but not for three." They rob him of his canteen and leave him to die.

That is the beginning of a new movie called The Ballad of Cable Hogue and, truth to tell, there is not much more of a plot after that. Cable (Jason Robards)...

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