Shaughnessy The Iron Marshal is a made for television movie and is based on a book written by Louis L'Amour. The movie was televised in 1996 and released on DVD in 2006. The Iron Marshal is a western that is a nice family film. This movie has it all, it is a western with action and humor all rolled into one. The movie was also rated PG for all ages.
The movie starts off in 19th Century New York and moves on to Kansas. In New York at this time the Irish were trying to survive. At this point in time it was not what you know that helped you survive but who you know. In Kansas you need to know about guns and horses to survive there.
Matthew Settle plays Tommy Shaughnessy who will go from New York to Kansas to survive. Tommy likes to fight and he wins. In the 19th century it seems the fight ring was where you earned your money if you were an Irish immigrant. Tommy was supposed to loose a fight and well he got mad and decided he wanted to win. This made the boss very angry and his friends will help put him on a train and told him not to come back. No one knew where the train was going but they knew it was the only way to save their friend. You see Tommy was beat up pretty bad when they got him in the train box. For a guy that doesn't know how to shoot a gun he is doing a great job staying alive. Tommy has to make all kinds of adjustments since New York and Kansas are two totally different places with totally different rules to live by. Tommy will at one point become the marshal and then he will be fired and then he will be rehired as the marshal again.
Bo Hopkins plays Rip Bartlett a gunfighter that was supposed to protect the town from an angry cattleman. He will meet Tommy at the doctors office when both were getting doctoring done. Starts out being a good guy but ends up being a bad guy. Rip will stage his own death so that he can sneak back and try and rob the train that is carrying money. I guess that $20, 000.00 back then was a lot of money. This is the amount of money that the railroad is giving the town as incentive money to build a train station.
There are a few very funny scenes in the movie since you are taking an Irishman from New York and throwing him into a whole new life style. Tommy has a problem with the horse in one scene where he is trying to saddle it up. It seems that when you go to notch the saddle under the horses belly, you should never get down under the horse. It seem when you are under the horse and the horse urinates it goes right on the person under the horse. There was another episode where Tommy is talking to the horse and the horse pooped on his shoes. It seems Tommy and horses don't get along very well.
I found this movie to have a good story and good characters as well. There is all types of action with out people dyeing all the time. Tommy will show people that being fast with a gun doesn't have to be there only answer to problems. I have not had the pleasure of reading Louis L'Amour's book but if it is as good as the movie I will have to check it out. I would recommend this movie for all ages and I would also recommend watching it more than once.