Tagline – He only lived for revenge … She only lived for his love!
Starring – John Wayne (Quirt Evans), Gail Russell (Penelope ‘Penny’ Worth), Harry Carey (Wistful McClintock), Bruce Cabot (Laredo Stevens), Irene Rich (Mrs. Worth).
Released – February, 1947
Directed By – James Edward Grant
Produced By – John Wayne Productions, Patnal Productions
Distributed By – Republic Pictures
Description – Gunman Quirt Evans is injured and on the run. Exhausted, Quirt collapses on farmland owned by Quaker Thomas Worth and his family.
The family take him in and begin to nurse Quirt back to health. Badly hurt, Quirt insists that the family take him to town to send an urgent telegram. Though not sure the trip is advisable, Thomas and his daughter Penelope load Quirt into their wagon and take him to the telegraph office where he wire’s a claim to the land recorder’s office and immediately passes out.
Back at the Worth farm, the doctor called to examine Quirt recognizes the outlaw and strongly warns the family as to who they are dealing with. The warning is ignored and the compassionate Quaker family continue to help with his recovery.
Quirt regains consciousness after a few days and is brought up-to-date by Penny. She also tells him that the Worth’s are a family of Quakers who believe in non-violence. What she doesn’t realize is that the man they have helped lives a life centered around violence.
The brief period of peace at the Worth Farm is about to be shattered. Penny’s brother Johnny hurriedly rides back to the farm with the news that two men named Hondo and Laredo are in town looking for Quirt. As Quirt prepares to leave, Penny, who has fallen for Quirt, offers to go with him.
Before this can be decided, there is the sound of approaching horses. Hondo and Laredo have come for the land deed. Thinking that Quirt, who is holding a gun on the pair, has the advantage the two men offer to buy the deed. Quirt wants $20,000. The men hand him $5,000 and dare him to come get the balance due when he has totally recovered. The men then leave.
Again preparing to leave, Penny begs Quirt to stay and, as he has also fallen for her, he agrees. A short time later the Worth Farm finds itself without water. Neighboring rancher Frederick Carson has dammed the stream where it runs through his property.
Quirt visits the Carson Ranch and his reputation as a gunman gets Carson to let the water pass to the Worth Farm. In return, Mrs. Worth treats Carson for a small medical problem and the two neighbor’s begin a new friendship. For Quirt, this experience has given him a new feeling of satisfaction, one attained without violence.
Marshall Wistful McClintock visits the Worth Farm to question Quirt about a stagecoach robbery. The Worth family backs Quirt up by telling Marshal McClintock that Quirt was with them at the time of the robbery.
Quirt Evans new-found feelings of peace will soon come to an end as his problems with Hondo and Laredo can only be settled one way. And Marshall McClintock is still not convinced that Quirt has changed, and warns Quirt that he is not the right kind of man for Penny and is bound to end up at the end of a rope. McClintock does promise Quirt that when that time comes, out of respect, he will use a new rope.
NOTABLE: Angel and the Badman was the first picture produced by John Wayne and a departure from the type of Western film usually associated with him.
John Wayne would later star in two films that took their names from characters in this film. Hondo and McClintock.