Way of a Gaucho (1952): Jacques Tourneur’s Western, Starring Gene Tierney and Rory Calhoun

The versatile Jacques Tourneur, best known for his horror pictures and film noirs, directed Way of a Gaucho, a Western starring Gene Tierney and Rory Calhoun.

Way of a Gaucho
Way of a Gaucho.jpg

Theatrical release poster

It was written by Philip Dunne and based on a novel by Herbert Childs.

Made by 20th Century Fox, the film was shot on location in Argentina.  It was one of a growing trend of Runaway productions which saw American production shift away from Hollywood to other countries, particularly Britain and Italy.

During World War II, the Argentinian market had remained open to Hollywood films and Fox had significant earnings there, which they were unable to spend outside the country.

The story portrays the adventures of an Argentine rebel gaucho, a South American cattleman, a variant of the Mexican vaquero and the American cowboy.

In 1875 Argentina, a young gaucho kills another man in a duel, and his prison sentence is commuted to joining the army. He serves under the tough Major Salinas, but soon grows tired of military life and deserts.

He then becomes Valverde and leads a band of gauchos to resist the increasing encroachment of railroad agents into the Pampas.

Teresa tells Miguel where Martin is hiding, but during a horse chase, Miguel falls and is trampled to death by the herd.

In the end, Martin agrees to turn himself in and face the consequences of his actions, as long as he can first marry Teresa as a free man.

Greeted with indifferent reviews, the film failed to make a profit upon its release.

Cast:

Gene Tierney as Teresa Chavez
Richard Boone as Major Salinas
Hugh Marlowe as Don Miguel Aleondo
Everett Sloane as Falcon
Enrique Chaico as Father Fernández
Jorge Villoldo as Valverde
Rolando Dumas as Julio
Hugo Mancini as Army Lieutenant
Néstor Yoan as Army Lieutenant

Credits:

Produced by Philip Dunne

Directed by Jacques Tourneur
Screenplay by Dunne, based on the novel, Way of a Gaucho, by Herbert Childs
Cinematography Harry Jackson
Edited by Robert Fritch
Music by Sol Kaplan
Color process Technicolor

Production and distribution: 20th Century Fox

Release date: October 16, 1952

Running time: 91 minutes
Budget $2.24 million
Box office $1.4 million