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Directed by John Ford

United States 1946 97 mins.

One of John Ford’s finest Westerns, and possibly the best known cinematic telling of the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral myth, My Darling Clementine quietly shimmers in its focus on the lyrical side of the American West. Henry Fonda plays Wyatt Earp, the legendary yet reluctant lawman of Tombstone, where he and his brothers stop during a cattle drive only to find a lawless, ramshackle town in need of cleaning up. When the youngest Earp brother is murdered while watching their cattle, Wyatt seeks justice and takes over as town marshal just as the Clantons, the region’s nastiest gang, roll in to town. While Ford stays relatively faithful to the legend, his focus on the bourgeoning relationship between Earp and new arrival Clementine Carter (Cathy Downs) makes the film much more than a simple shoot-‘em-up in the classic Western mold.