SILVER LODE may be the finest western that RKO released in the mid-1950s. With expert and taut scripting, high production values (it's one of producer Benedict Bogeaus' best), excellent direction under the veteran Allan Dwan, this little oater also has two of the best performances of its two male leads: John Payne and Dan Duryea. Payne, a veteran of numerous Westerns for Paramount [e.g., EL PASO and THE EAGLE AND THE HAWK] and Republic [e.g., THE ROAD TO DENVER], here turns in a tour de force as the innocent, but hunted and accused hero. He is very fine indeed, his lines crisply given, adding to the mounting tension. Duryea, one of Hollywood's finest "bad guys," almost outdoes Payne; Duryea is simply studpendous. The final scene between the two--in the town bell tower--is quite striking and remarkable.
Secondary starring roles are filled with some very competent Hollywood veterans---Robert Warwick, Emile Meyer as the town sheriff, Harry Carey Jr. and Alan Hale Jr. as members of Dan Duryea's "posse." Lisbeth Scott is Payne's love interest; she's does quite well.
VCI has given us a fine, clean print, and attaches the original trailer at the end, along with bios of the leading actors, all very helpful.
Silver Lode is the kind of movie that will repay watching from time to time. It is way above average as oaters go. Recommended highly both to those interested in good Western fare and, yes, to others interested simply in good cinema.