The Gatling Gun

Tough men, during hard times, battle for the ultimate weapon.

Action Western
93 min     4.2     1971     USA


Doctor Gatling invented a war machine to beat all arrows, and guns.


Wuchak wrote:
Desert survival Western "The Gatling Gun" was originally titled "King Gun" and shot in 1969, but not released till 1971. It's a cavalry vs. Indians Western focusing on the eponymous weapon with a great cast of familiars -- Guy Stockwell, Robert Fuller, Phil Harris, Woody Strode, Patrick Wayne, John Carradine, Pat Buttram and BarBara Luna (from Star Trek's "Mirror, Mirror") -- highlighted by curvy redhead Judy Jordan, to say the least. Critics write it off as "routine" and akin to a TV Western. True, it is Grade 'B' and comic-booky, so proceed with caution. BUT the notable cast clicks and the story delivers the goods, as far as Western (melo)drama & action goes. It's essentially a survival tale of a small group of soldiers and civilians who team-up to survive a desert trek threatened by Two-Knife (Carlos Rivas) and his rogue tribe. If you're a sucker for desert-survival tales (like me), such as "Sands of the Kalahari" (1965), "Flight of the Phoenix" (1965), "Escape from Zahrain" (1962) and "They Came to Cordura" (1959), you'll probably appreciate "The Gatling Gun," as long as you can forgive the TV budget (although it's not technically a TV movie and was dubiously released to theaters). It's not as good as the first three, but it's more entertaining than the last one. While "Cordura" is a more serious production with overall superior production values, it's also more hokey in a 50's Western sense. The trek through the desert features a lot of drama but the movie ends with a bang as the group squares-off against Two-Knife and his braves. Stockwell stands out as the alpha male Army Lieutenant who naturally attracts the babe (Jordan), whereas Fuller is effective as Private Sneed, done-in by his own lust for lucre. The film runs 1 hour, 27 minutes, and was shot at Eaves Movie Ranch and Ghost Ranch near Sante Fe, New Mexico. GRADE: B-