Ride, Vaquero! John Farrow’s Technicolor Western, Starring Robert Taylor, Ava Gardner, Anthony Quinn, and Howard Keel.

John Farrow directed Ride, Vaquero! MGM Technicolor western, starring Robert Taylor, Ava Gardner, Anthony Quinn, and Howard Keel.

The screenplay, by Frank Fenton and Farrow, centers on Mexican bandit Jose Esqueda (Quinn), who conducts raids against settlers in the Brownsville, Texas. He threatens to burn down homes, including the ranch King Cameron (Keel) has built for his wife Cordelia (Gardner).

At first, Rio (Taylor), raised like a brother to Esqueda, joins forces with him, but later on he forms partnership with Cameron, and even saves his life.

Complications arise when Cordelia’s initial distrust turns to desire, forcing Cameron to save his property and marriage after Esqueda robs Brownsville’s bank and kills the sheriff.

Shot by Esqueda, Cameron is once again saved by Rio, who confronts Esqueda in a gunfight.

The film, made at the height of popularity of both Taylor and Garner, was commercially successful, earning $1.8 in the US and $1.6 million elsewhere, making a profit of close to $1 million.

Robert Taylor as Rio
Ava Gardner as Cordelia
Howard Keel as Cameron
Anthony Quinn as Esqueda
Jack Elam as Barton
Kurt Kasznar as Father Antonio


I am grateful to TCM for showing this western on August 8, 2019, as part of tribute to Ava Gardner.