Budd Boetticher is not a well-known director; indeed, even such a knowledgeable critic as Andrew Sarris ranks him among ‘esoterica’. Most critics would be inclined to dismiss him as responsible for no more than a few run-of-the-mill westerns, hardly distinguishable from his equally anonymous fellows—a typical Hollywood technician, a name which flashes past on the credits and is soon forgotten. This would be to misjudge Boetticher. His works are, in fact, distinctive, homogeneous in theme and treatment, and of more than usual interest. He is an author and well aware of it himself; he is lucid about his own films. It is high time critics were equally lucid.
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