Review: ‘Duel at Diablo’

Duel at Diablo packs enough fast action in its cavalry-Indians narrative to satisfy the most avid follower of this type of entertainment. Produced with knowhow, and directed with a flourish by Ralph Nelson, the feature is long on exciting and well-staged battle movement and carries a story that while having little novelty still stands to good effect.

Duel at Diablo packs enough fast action in its cavalry-Indians narrative to satisfy the most avid follower of this type of entertainment. Produced with knowhow, and directed with a flourish by Ralph Nelson, the feature is long on exciting and well-staged battle movement and carries a story that while having little novelty still stands to good effect.

Based on the Marvin Albert novel, Apache Rising, screenplay stars James Garner as a scout and Sidney Poitier as a former trooper who now makes his living breaking in horses for the service. Rivalling them in interest and importance, however, is Bill Travers, a cavalry lieutenant who heads the column of raw recruits to a distant fort and is attacked en route by the Apaches.

Garner is properly rugged and acquits himself handsomely, convincing as a plainsman who knows his Indians. Poitier tackles a new type of characterization here, far afield from anything he has essayed in the past. Travers in a strong character part is vigorous and appealing and endears himself with his light and human touch.

Duel at Diablo

Production

United Artists. Director Ralph Nelson; Producer Fred Engel, Ralph Nelson; Screenplay Marvin Alpert, Michel Grilikhes; Camera Charles F. Wheeler; Editor Fredric Steinkamp; Music Neal Hefti; Art Director Alfred Ybarra

Crew

(Color) Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1966. Running time: 105 MIN.

With

James Garner Sidney Poitier Bibi Andersson Dennis Weaver Bill Travers William Redfield
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