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on 14 May 2012
Matt Dillon is smooth-talking bad boy Andrew Doyle, a drifter, who teams up with Wade Corey (Andrew McCarthy) on his travels. Corey is on his way to a wedding in NYC and decides to hide in a box car to get a free ride, not realizing Doyle is already aboard the train. The two become friends of sorts and stop off in a small Kansas town where Doyle supposedly knows some folks.
Doyle then involves Wade in an impromptu bank robbery. The entire town are at the annual carnival and Wade has little option when threatened with a gun. The unlikely sound of the bank alarm has the town on running. Both Wade and Doyle high tail it. They are split up and Wade hides the bag of money under a bridge; he remains in the area finding work on a local farm. Doyle is recognized and the police begin a search for one armed robber.
Some events happen at this point that change things: Wade saves a young girl from drowning and is pictured as a hero on the front page of the local newspaper; Doyle is on the run; the townspeople want Doyle for the robbery and Wade as a hero; Doyle wants the money and goes looking for Wade; Doyle can incriminate Wade in the robbery if he doesn't get his share; and Wade falls in love with Lori Bayles (Leslie Hope), whose father owns the farm where Wade is working, losing all interest in the money or of being hailed a hero.
The film inevitably ends in a showdown between Doyle and Wade.
Kansas is a decent thriller with a glorious rural backdrop. All the actors put in good performances: like a young James Dean Dillon fits easily into the bad boy role; McCarthy is always aptly cast as the nice guy. The plot is fairly conventional but offers enough twists and turns to maintain interest. Like Young Guns (1988), Kansas is one of the last films before the brat pack actors went their own individual ways. Cast: Matt Dillon, Andrew McCarthy, Leslie Hope, Kyra Sedgwick. Andy Romano, Arlen Dean Snyder, and Alan Toy.