Adapted from an Elmore Leonard novel, Valdez is Coming stars Burt Lancaster in the title role. A scrupulously honest Mexican-American marshal, Bob Valdez is double-crossed and humiliated by wealthy, unscrupulous rancher Jon Cypher. Since Cypher has the law on his side, Valdez is obliged to mete out his own justice. He kidnaps Cypher's mistress Susan Clark to force the rancher's hand. At first, Cypher is able to rally a group of tough hombres against Valdez, but one by one they side with the marshal. Director Edwin Sherin, who'd helmed the Broadway production of The Great White Hope, makes several rather anachronistic points regarding the film's racial issues; on the other hand, Valdez is Coming is one of the most-authentic looking westerns ever made-right down to the deglamorization of Susan Clark, who in a 1950s film might have looked as though she'd just visited a frontier branch of Max Factor. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
The mark of a legendary actor is also shown by the ability to basically "run the show" almost entirely around him, such as Lancaster does in this film. It's practically a one-man show w/the rest of the actors dancing & feeding off his persona. Different kind of "western" -- I wasn't sure at first when I heard Lancaster's Mexican accent, but soon I forgot all about the accent due to his powerful performance as Valdez.