Producer Hal Wallis has taken the historic meeting of Wyatt Earp, a celebrated lawman of the West, his brothers and Doc Holliday, with the Clanton gang in the O.K. Corral of Tombstone, Arizona, and fashioned an absorbing yarn [suggested by an article by George Scullin] in action leading up to the gory gunfight.
Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas enact the respective roles of Earp and Holliday, story opening in Fort Griffin, Texas, when the gun-handy Dodge City marshal saves the other from a lynch mob. Action moves then to the Kansas town, where Holliday, at first ordered to leave town but permitted to stay, helps Earp in gunning three badmen. When the marshal heeds the plea of one of his brothers, marshal of Tombstone, for aid in handling the dangerous Clanton gang, Holliday accompanies him.
Both stars are excellently cast in their respective characters. Rhonda Fleming is in briefly as a femme gambler whom Lancaster romances, beautifully effective, and Jo Van Fleet, as Holliday’s constant travelling companion again demonstrates her ability in dramatic characterization.
1957: Nominations: Best Editing, Sound