The Law and Jake Wade, The: John Sturges Western, Starring Robert Taylor and Richard Widmark

John Sturges directed The Law and Jake Wade, a Metrocolor western released in CinemaScope, based on the 1956 novel by Marvin H. Albert.

This movie was Robert Taylor’s last MGM assignment as a contract lead man.

Taylor plays the title character, Jake Wade, a reformed town sheriff marshal. Ready to marry and live peacefully settle down with Peggy Carter (Patricia Owens), old shadowy friend,Clint Hollister (Richard Widmark), escapes from jail.

Jake is stalked by his psychotic ex-partner, who is out to get the cash from the gang’s previous heist, which Jake later buried. Wade leads Hollister on a tedious voyage to recover the loot, bringing Peggy as leverage.

All goes to hell when the trio finds Indians who have taken refuge in the ghost town where the money is buried.

The film was shot on location in California’s High Sierra mountains, Lone Pine and Death Valley.


I am grateful to TCM for showing this Western on March 7, 2020.


Directed by John Sturges
Produced by William Hawks
Written by Marvin H. Albert (novel)
Screenplay by William Bowers
Music by Fred Steiner
Cinematography: Robert Surtees
Edited by Ferris Webster
Distributed by MGM
Release date: June 6, 1958
Running time: 88 minutes

Budget: $1.5 million
Box office: $.2.8 million