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Passion (1954)

Approved | | Adventure, Western | 6 October 1954 (USA)
In Mexican California, a land feud erupts and murder is committed when rich landowner Don Domingo reneges on an earlier verbal promise made by his father to grant to the tenant Melo family a piece of land.


Allan Dwan


Beatrice A. Dresher (based on a story by), Miguel Padilla (based on a story by) | 4 more credits »


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Complete credited cast:
Cornel Wilde ... Juan Obreón
Yvonne De Carlo ... Rosa Melo / Antonia 'Tonia' Melo
Raymond Burr ... Captain Rodriguez
Lon Chaney Jr. ... Castro (as Lon Chaney)
Rodolfo Acosta ... Salvador Sandro
John Qualen ... Gaspar Melo
Anthony Caruso ... Sergeant Muñoz
Frank DeKova ... Martinez (as Frank de Kova)


In old Spanish California, dashing cattleman Juan Obregon returns to the rancho of his friend Gaspar Melo, to find he's fathered a son on Rosa, one of Gaspar's identical twin daughters. Overjoyed, he plans to formalize his "unofficial" marriage. But trouble brews; Melo's land is of unclear title and the new Don Domingo hopes to grab it for his own profit. Violence results. Without even knowing who survived, Juan (accompanied by Rosa's tomboy sister Tonya) rides for revenge, through spectacular pastoral and wilderness scenery. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


HIS lust for revenge becomes as consuming a passion as love itself! SHE fights with a passion no peril can stem...for her right to live and love! See more »


Adventure | Western


Approved | See all certifications »





English | Spanish

Release Date:

6 October 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Where the Wind Dies See more »

Filming Locations:

California, USA

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Raymond Burr severely injured his leg during the filming of a chase scene. While he recovered in hospital the script was rewritten to explain his limp. See more »

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User Reviews

It's hard to kill a man that has much to live for.
30 November 2012 | by SpikeopathSee all my reviews

Passion is directed by Allan Dwann and collectively written by Beatrice Dresher, Josef Leytes and Howard Estabrook. It stars Cornel Wilde, Yvonne De Carlo, Raymond Burr, Lon Chaney Junior, Rodolfo Acosta, Anthony Caruso and John Qualen. Music is by Louis Forbes and cinematography by John Alton.

Early California . . .under Mexican rule. . .the timeless mountains and eternal snows looking down on the everlasting struggle of man against man.

The Dwann and Bogeaus (producer) combination once again craft a Western that breaks free of B budget restrictions to reveal a film of some entertaining substance. This is all about man's thirst for revenge as Wilde's Juan Obreon finds his family ruthlessly snuffed out by Acosta's land hungry Salvator Sandro. When the law fail to act upon a flimsy piece of evidence, Obreon decides to go after the Sandro gang himself.

Obreon is not a ghost.

Running at under 90 minutes it would have been easy for the makers to quickly get on with the revenge axis from the off, but time is afforded the Juan Obreon character so we understand why he does what he does. For the first 30 minutes the love and family contentment surrounding Obreon shines through, and with De Carlo playing dual characters (Juan's comely wife and fiery sister-in-law), there's a bit of novelty value added into the mix. We get snippets of how vile Sandro is, such as when we are introduced to him he is whipping his young son for a bit of "tough" love, and the surrounding vistas are impressive observers to the unfolding drama.

Story set and on to revenge we go as Obreon pursues the murderers of his family while himself being pursued by two lawmen (Burr and Caruso), one of which is an old friend who isn't exactly pulling out all the stops to catch the fugitive. It all leads to a final confrontation that is set in the snowy mountains where all interested parties convene at a remote log cabin. Dwann has paced it neatly and created a good amount of tension whilst also showing his expertise as a choreographer of fights.

Alton's photography is most appealing, be it the capturing of the California landscape, or his use of light and shadow for a ruin based sequence, Alton once again shows himself to be a most talented cinematographer who always added a kick to even the lowest of budgeted pictures. Cast are mostly effective, with Wilde leading the way and proving his worth as a lead man who is wronged and he shows some genuine pain in his visuality. Unfortunately the good work of the principal actors is tainted a touch by Chaney Junior once again looking out of place in a Western, with fluctuating accent as well, and Burr disappoints by never once convincing as a law man conflicted by his emotions.

With revenge at its core, and plot points involving abandoned babies and cold blooded murder, it's a strong Western that ultimately survives its flaws to become another very fine Dwann/Bogeaus production. 7.5/10

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