Title: 4 for Texas
Studio: Warner Brothers
Release Date: December 18, 1963
Running Time: 1: 55
“If I had to take a bath, you could have waited till Saturday!”
The film begins on a delivery route in Galveston, Texas. A gang led by a killer named Matson (Charles Bronson) ambushes a stagecoach filled with money. However, Zack Thomas (Frank Sinatra) and Joe Jarrett (Dean Martin) are able to fight them off. The stage wrecks and Joe makes off with money, leaving Zack in the dust. Zack had a business arrangement with town banker Harvey Burden (Victor Buono). He was to use the funds to purchase an old riverboat and turn it into Galveston’s gambling jewel of the Gulf Coast. Meanwhile, Jarrett arrives in town with the same plan, and meets widow Maxine Richter (Ursula Andress). Jarrett & Maxine, and Zack & Elya Carlson (Anita Ekberg), Galveston’s high society madam, begin a game of one-upmanship to gain final control of the vessel.
The Three Stooges guest star as inept delivery men, who run afoul of two elderly ladies (Ellen Corby, Jesslyn Fax) protesting the delivery of a nude painting to the riverboat lounge. Moe, Larry & Curly Joe perform the “point to the right” and “he’s from Texas” routines.
Unknown to our heroes, Burden wants it all for himself, and he’s the man behind Matson. Opening night arrives, and Joe and Zack engage in a winner-take-all brawl, but Matson is laying in wait to assassinate both.
4 for Texas Cast & Crew
|Directed by||Robert Aldrich|
|Produced by||Robert Aldrich|
|Written by||Teddi Sherman
Curly Joe DeRita
|Music by||Nelson Riddle|
|Edited by||Michael Luciano|
4 for Texas Trivia
- The film’s original title when production began was Two for Texas
- The role of Elya was originally intended for Sophia Loren, who had already worked with Sinatra in The Pride and the Passion
- Forty-three years after its original premiere, 4 for Texas was presented at the Torino Film Festival on November 12, 2006
- 4 for Texas was filmed in 1.85:1 aspect ratio on 35-mm Technicolor film
- It was nominated for the Golden Laurel as “Top Action Drama”
- During production, the relationship between star Sinatra and director Aldrich became strained. Aldrich felt the film was not a success and cited problems with his own script, as well as Sinatra’s lack of enthusiasm for the project. Aldrich calculated that Sinatra worked a total of only 80 hours during 37 days of filming.