The Outlaw

116 mins

One of the weirdest westerns of all time, reflecting the eccentricities of its producer and credited director, Howard Hughes, who completed it only after firing Howard Hawks. When it came out in 1943 it was trumpeted and sometimes banned for its sexual audacity (Jane Russell debuts in a brassiere designed by Hughes himself), yet much of the plot now makes it seem like a closet gay movie. Made two years prior to release, it was scripted by Jules Furthman and shot by Gregg Toland, which gives it some class—but by and large it's enjoyable today chiefly as a camp hoot. With Jack Buetel (the forgotten lead, who seems to care more about his horse than Russell), Walter Huston, and Thomas Mitchell.

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