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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This taut, classic Western demonstrates what craftsmanship in making movies is all about
There is a lonely train called the 3.10 to Yuma
The pounding of the wheels is more like a mournful sigh
There's a legend and there's a rumor
When you take the 3.10 to Yuma
You can see the ghosts of outlaws go ridin' by...
In the sky...
Way up high...

Now that we've got out of the way one of the most awful opening theme songs any...
Published on 12 Aug 2009 by C. O. DeRiemer

versus
11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars More than routine
This early script of Elmore Leonard carries some of the themes and motifs of his later work. There is the suggestion that Glenn Ford's character is no worse than the men who hunt him down and in fact he is shown to have a strict code of honour by which he lives: he also has respect for women and enjoys their company using charm to interest them. Also the doubling effect...
Published on 27 Sep 2005 by J. Brigley


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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This taut, classic Western demonstrates what craftsmanship in making movies is all about, 12 Aug 2009
By 
C. O. DeRiemer (San Antonio, Texas, USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
There is a lonely train called the 3.10 to Yuma
The pounding of the wheels is more like a mournful sigh
There's a legend and there's a rumor
When you take the 3.10 to Yuma
You can see the ghosts of outlaws go ridin' by...
In the sky...
Way up high...

Now that we've got out of the way one of the most awful opening theme songs any Western has been cursed with (sung by Frankie Laine), let's talk about one of the best-crafted Westerns Hollywood ever made...a fine example of getting the job done superbly and without phony flash, burdensome moral lessons, extra hormones or intense "acting." 3:10 to Yuma is the real goods.

It's the short, unadorned story of Dan Evans (Van Heflin), a poor, stubborn rancher in the third year of a drought. He needs water. He needs money. His wife loves him and works as hard as he does. He worries how she's able to put up with all the misfortune. His two young sons look up to him but he'd like to leave them with a memory of him of more than just a hard-working failure. When they're out rounding up cattle the three witness a stagecoach holdup. The youngest boy wants his father to stop the holdup and capture the robbers. He knows with young certitude his father could do it all. Dan tells the boys to be quiet. As played by Van Heflin, we accept Dan's integrity and his earnest desire to do something for his family.

It's also the story of Ben Wade (Glenn Ford). He and his gang rob anything they can get money from. Wade makes it a point of pride that he kills a person only if there were no other way to protect his own safety. Ben Wade is intelligent. He's charming, tough, and knows how to get around a woman or get inside a man's head. As played by Glenn Ford, we're nearly captured by star charisma and likeability. We know Ben Wade is a smart, sly villain, but we admire his confidence and smiling way of undermining another man's confidence.

Dan Evans, desperate for money, agrees for $200 to take the captured Ben Wade to Contention, where he'll put him on the 3:10 train to Yuma and the Yuma Territorial Prison. Ben Wade knows that his gang will sooner or later figure out that he's being taken to Contention to await the train. He even tells Evans how they'll find out. When they show up and rescue him, they'll kill Evans and anyone helping him.

This taut, simple story is told with economy and tension. There's no angst or "acting," no allusions to the director's favorite causes, no close-ups of the make-up artists' skill at creating blood clots. In fact, there's not much bloodshed or violence until Dan finally has to find a way to get Ben from the hotel in Contention to the train station, where the train is waiting, and where so is Ben Wade's gang.

Although there are some fine subsidiary performances, the movie is all about Evans and Wade. And that means that Heflin and Ford had to be at the top of their game to sustain this 92-minute movie. Dan Evans is a man much like Heflin's Dan Starrett in Shane. He's more resourceful than we might think, but mainly he's an honorable, earnest man who might be tempted by Ben Wade's coaxing tongue, but not for long. He wants the $200 for his family and because he knows he's doing the right thing. Unlike the 2007 remake, there's little question but that his wife loves him and that his two sons look up to him. Glenn Ford rarely played bad guys (watch him in Lust for Gold), but he makes an outstanding one here. His shooting of two men at the start of the movie, one of them a member of his gang, is fast and startling. But it's Ford's winning personality that makes Wade so attractive and so dangerous. Maybe sometimes, when he dallies with a tired, pretty barmaid, he even believes some of what he says.

A good deal of the movie is spent in a hotel room in Contention with Wade in handcuffs lying on the bed and Evans holding a shotgun, peering uneasily out the window looking for signs of Wade's gang. The interplay between Ford and Heflin - easy and underplayed - is a pleasure to watch. Ford shows how he can worm his way into Evans' mind, undermining his will and raising doubts. Heflin shows how tempting and frustrating just thinking about what Wade is saying must be. The final shootout is well-staged and violent; the conclusion is satisfying. There are no attempts by rich Hollywood directors and producers to bring Tinsel-town tragedy to a good story.

There are echoes of High Noon, which the craftsmanship of this movie and the performances of Ford and Heflin quickly dispel. There are a few clichés that are handled so respectfully, so matter-of-factly and so quickly that they are easy to forgive. The budget for 3:10 to Yuma (1957) was probably, even in 2007 dollars, less than Russell Crowe's salary alone in 3:10 to Yuma (2007). If you like movies and appreciate well-crafted stories, 3:10 to Yuma (1957) might find a place in your collection.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic revisionist western, 2 May 2011
This review is from: 3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
Peaceful farmer Dan (Van Heflin) stumbles across a wagon robbery in which infamous thief and murderer Ben Wade (played by the great Glenn Ford) shoot and murders an innocent man, so Dan flees with his two sons. When Wade and his gang arrive in his town, he is forced to decide whether to do what's right or to think about the safety of his family. Wade's gang temporarily leave town leaving Wade to romance a lonely barmaid, until he is captured by the authorities. When Dan is offered a substantial amount of money to transport Wade to the train station where he can catch the 3:10 to Yuma to face trial, he must come up with a plan to avoid being killed by the soon to be returning gang.

Joining a long list a classic revisionist westerns alongside John Ford's My Darling Clementine and Fred Zinnemann's High Noon, the west isn't used as a primary focus for the story, but instead western elements are used to assist a different type of story. 3:10 To Yuma doesn't usually feature in those ridiculous 'Best Movies of blah blah...' lists but deserves it's place amongst the very best westerns. Similar to another genre classic Johnny Guitar, the good and bad guys are not so easy to disassociate. Here, the big 'baddie' Wade is somewhat likable, and has an admiration for the dedication of the nervous and initially almost cowardly 'hero' Dan. It's also damn exciting and every bit as tense as High Noon. It was recently remade starring Christian Bale and Russell Crowe, which I have yet to see, but I doubt it will capture the old- school spirit of this.

[...]
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic Western !, 10 Sep 2006
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This review is from: 3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
1957's 3:10 to Yuma, is one of the most interesting and popular westerns of the 1950ths. Directed by Delmer Daves, once again teaming with Glenn Ford (after 1956's Jubal)the film is an interesting story revolving around a rancher played by Van Heflin(Shane)who has to escort a dangerous gang lider to the 3.10 train to Yuma from where he will go to jail. Ford plays the bad guy in this one, but in a very simpathetic way, rediming himself at the end...

Beautifully shot in black and white, this is a western that influenced the genre in the years that follow, inspiring for instance Kirk Douglas 1958 "Last Train from Gun Hill" and with his classic status being reinforced by the upcoming remake feauturing Russel Crowe and Christian Balle. Glenn Ford, who passed away this year was always an underrated actor, however he was one of the best screen cowboys who ever lived, his films with Delmer Daves (Jubal, 3:10 to Yuma, Cowboy) plus " the fastest gun alive" and Anthony Manns's last western, 1960 "Cimarron" toguether with the noir classics "Gilda", "the Big Heat" and "the undecover man" make Glenn Ford a true Hollywood legend.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Room 207 and the 3:10 To Yuma., 15 April 2011
By 
Spike Owen "John Rouse Merriott Chard" (Birmingham, England.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
Van Heflin plays rancher Dan Evans whose family and livelihood is at breaking point due to a devastating drought. Needing money fast, Evans gets thrown a financial lifeline when a reward is offered to escort a recently captured outlaw, Ben Wade {Glenn Ford}, on to the 3:10 train to Yuma prison. But as Wade's gang closes in to free the shackled outlaw, and the clock starts to tick down, Evans finds himself torn between a sense of social duty and an easy option courtesy of Wade's mind game offer.

Based on a story by Elmore Leonard, this is a tight and tense Western that harks to the wonderful High Noon five years earlier. Directed by Delmer Daves, 3:10 To Yuma sees two of the Western genre's most undervalued performers come together in perfect contrast. Heflin's Evans is honest, almost saintly; but ultimately filling out his life with dullness and too much of a safe approach. Ford's Wade is the other side of the coin, ruthless {the opening sequence sets it up}, handsome and very self-confident. This coupling makes for an interesting story-one that thankfully delivers royally on its set-up. As Wade's gang closes in, led by a sleek and mean Richard Jaeckel, Wade toys with Evans, offering him financial gain and gnawing away at him about his abilities as a husband, the tension is palpable in the extreme. Nothing is ever certain until the credits role, and that is something that is never to be sniffed at in the Western genre.

The comparison with High Noon is a fair one because 3:10 To Yuma also deals with the man alone scenario. A man left alone to deal with his adversaries and his own conscience; money or pride indeed. Daves' direction is gritty and suitably claustrophobic, with close ups either being erotically charged {watch out for Felicia Farr's scenes with Ford in the saloon} or tightly wound in room 207 of the hotel; where Heflin & Ford positively excel. His outdoor work, aided by Charles Lawton Jr's photography, also hits the spot, particularly the barren land desperate for water to invigorate it. While the piece also has a tremendous George Duning theme song warbled (and whistled by Ford in the film) by Frankie Laine. Great acting, great direction and a great involving story; essential for fans of character driven Westerns. 8.5/10

Footnote: The film was very well remade in 2007 with two of the modern era's finest leading men, Russell Crowe & Christian Bale, in the dual roles of Ben & Dan respectively. One hopes, and likes to think, that they remade it purely because it was such a great premise to work from. Because Daves' film didn't need improving, it was, and still is, a great film showcasing how great this often maligned genre can sometimes be.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 3:10 to Yuma, 10 Jan 2013
By 
A. Sam (Benfleet, Essex UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
Great story of a western classic.
This one stays true to original movie story line, yet, updates surroundings and other aspects.
Good Movie, good acting.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "Don't miss the train", 23 May 2010
By 
Master Ds Cholerton "Impressive!" (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
After outlaw leader Ben Wade (Glenn Ford) is captured in a small town, his gang continues to threaten. Small-time rancher Dan Evans (Van Heflin) is persuaded to take Wade in secret to the nearest town with a railway station to await the train to the court at Yuma. Once the two are held up in the hotel to wait it becomes apparent the secret is out, and a battle of wills start. This classic thriller offers superb performances from everyone in the cast and is one of the best black and white westerns in a while, suspenseful and action filled, while also being terrifically brainy at the same time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars FAR BETTER THAN THE REMAKE., 28 Feb 2010
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This review is from: 3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
i can't understand why it was filmed in b/w when glen ford films from a decade earlier were in colour , however the film itself is top notch . just like high noon or shane it's a simple story told with maximum tension and is worthy of 4 stars in my book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Almost a masterpiece, 10 Nov 2007
By 
Trevor Willsmer (London, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
From the days when Elmore Leonard was best known for his Westerns, 3:10 to Yuma come close to being a masterpiece but just falls short in the final reel. Along with a tight, tense narrative, it's extremely well directed by unfairly overlooked Delmar Daves, whose mastery of the camera is visible in almost every frame. It also boasts a dazzling star performance from Glenn Ford that many of today's stars could pick up a few tricks from: between them, Daves and Ford almost (but not quite) manage to pull off the completely out of character ending. Leaves High Noon eating its dust.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars High class western, 7 Nov 2007
By 
S J Buck (Kent, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
Although clearly inspired by "High Noon", "3:10 to Yuma" is sufficiently original, and has a lot of other good qualities, that it compares favourably with that earlier great film.

Glenn Ford stars as Ben Wade the leader of a gang of theives who at the beginning of the film rob a stagecoach. Dan Evans witnesses the robbery and is powerless to do anything about it. Wade takes Evans horses but allows him and his sons to walk away unscathed. In the second half of the film the two meet each other again, in completly different circumstances and the main plot unfolds.

The strong point of this film is its cinematography. Its beautifully shot in black and white and is presented in wide screen. The opening scene which unfolds over the opening credits deserves a special mention, but there are many other scenes which are excellently shot. Full credit to the director Delmer Daves and the Cinematographer Charles Lawton Jr. This element of the film merits 5 stars.

However, its not as good as High Noon, and had a few moments where I just didn't believe what was happening. Notable amongst these was the ending which seemed like a bit of a cop-out to me. I have not seen the remake yet (although I know someone who has and he was not impressed) but it will have to be very good to be better than this.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars More than routine, 27 Sep 2005
By 
J. Brigley "Jude Brigley" (Maesteg) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: 3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
This early script of Elmore Leonard carries some of the themes and motifs of his later work. There is the suggestion that Glenn Ford's character is no worse than the men who hunt him down and in fact he is shown to have a strict code of honour by which he lives: he also has respect for women and enjoys their company using charm to interest them. Also the doubling effect seen in much of Leonard's work is apparent as Ford and Heflin have a respect for each other which leads to Ford making unlikely but symbolic gestures. With hints of 'High Noon' and 'Shane' at first glance it appears another routine Western but the quality of the script and the central performances always make it interesting.
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3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002]
3.10 To Yuma [DVD] [2002] by Delmer Daves (DVD - 2002)
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