Wyatt Earp (1994) - Rotten Tomatoes

Wyatt Earp1994

Wyatt Earp (1994)




Critic Consensus: Easy to admire yet difficult to love, Wyatt Earp buries eye-catching direction and an impressive cast in an undisciplined and overlong story.

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Movie Info

Directed by Lawrence Kasdan, this epic version of the legendary western sheriff-gunslinger's life story stars Kevin Costner as Earp, who lived from 1848 to 1929. Growing up on a farm in Iowa, Earp tries to run away to join the Union Army in the Civil War, but he is turned away because of his youth. Instead, he studies law and marries Urilla Sutherland (Annabeth Gish). But Urilla dies of typhoid fever before they can have children. Earp grows despondent and descends into drinking and petty thievery, but his father Nicholas (Gene Hackman) finds him, sobers him up, and sets him straight. Earp becomes a buffalo hunter and a close companion of Bat Masterson (Tom Sizemore) and his brother Ed (Bill Pullman). With his brothers, Virgil (Michael Madsen) and Morgan (Linden Ashby), Earp sets out to clean up the violence-plagued towns of the old West -- by using his own guns to settle scores. Earp takes up with Mattie Blaylock (Mare Winningham), a drug addict and prostitute, then discards her for actress Josie Marcus (Joanna Going). In Tombstone, Arizona, the Earp brothers and their comrade Doc Holliday (Dennis Quaid), who is plagued by tuberculosis and a compulsion for gambling, meet their match in a ruthless gang led by Ike Clanton (Jeff Fahey). ~ Michael Betzold, Rovi

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Kevin Costner
as Wyatt Earp
Dennis Quaid
as Doc Holliday
Gene Hackman
as Nicholas Earp
Michael Madsen
as Virgil Earp
David Andrews
as James Earp
Linden Ashby
as Morgan Earp
Catherine O'Hara
as Allie Earp
Bill Pullman
as Ed Masterson
Joanna Going
as Josie Marcus
Jeff Fahey
as Ike Clanton
Mark Harmon
as Sheriff Johnny Behan
Isabella Rossellini
as Big Nose Kate
Tom Sizemore
as Bat Masterson
JoBeth Williams
as Bessie Earp
Mare Winningham
as Mattie Earp
James Gammon
as Mr. Sutherland
Rex Linn
as Frank McLaury
Randle Mell
as John Clum
Adam Baldwin
as Tom McLaury
Annabeth Gish
as Urilla Sutherland
Lewis Smith
as Curly Bill Brocius
Ian Bohen
as Young Wyatt
Betty Buckley
as Virginia Earp
Todd Allen
as Sherman McMasters
Mackenzie Astin
as Young Man on Boat
Jim Caviezel
as Warren Earp
Karen Grassle
as Mrs. Sutherland
John Denis Johnstone
as Frank Stilwell
John Dennis Johnston
as Frank Stillwell
Martin Kove
as Ed Ross
Jack Kehler
as Bob Hatch
Kirk Fox
as Pete Spence
Norman Howell Jr.
as Johnny Ringo
Boots Southerland
as Marshall White
James "Scotty" Augare
as Indian Charlie
Gabriel Folse
as Billy Clanton
Kris Kamm
as Billy Claiborne
John Lawlor
as Judge Spicer
Monty Stuart
as Dutch Wiley
Hugh Ross
as Erwin Sutherland
Michael McGrady
as John Shanssey
Scott Paul
as Young Morgan
Matt O'Toole
as Gyp Clements
Darwin V. Mitchell
as Tom Chapman
Steve Kniesel
as Bullwacker
Larry Sims
as Dirty Sodbuster
Greg Goossen
as Friend of Bullwacker
Clark Sanchez
as Mike Donovan
Ed Beimfohr
as Faro Dealer
Ben Zeller
as Dr. Seger
Albert Trujillo
as Camp Foreman
Rockne Tarkington
as Stable Hand
Steph Benseman
as Pine Bluff Sheriff
Bob 'Dutch' Holland
as Tubercular Inmate
John Doe
as Tommy Behind-the-Deuce
Steve Cormier
as Tent Saloon Bartender
Matt Langseth
as Link Borland
David Doty
as Mayor Wilson
Steven G. Tyler
as Deputy Ford
Billy Streater
as Marshall Meagher
David L. Stone
as Larry Deger
Jake Walker
as Mannen Clements
Geo Cook
as Big Cowboy
Dillinger Steele
as Drunk Cowboy
Steve Lindsay
as Drunk Cowboy
Dick Beach
as Wagner
Kathleen O'Hara
as Hotel Resident
Nicholas Benseman
as Delivery Boy
Sarge McGraw
as Deputy Black
Steven Hartley
as Spangenberg
Brett Cullen
as Saddle Tramp
Marlene Williams
as Saloon Dealer
Paul Ukena
as Bar Regular
Karen Schwartz
as Marshall White's Wife
Glen Burns
as Bar Patron
John Furlong
as Clem Hafford
Rusty Hendrickson
as Turkey Creek Jack
Hanley Smith
as Billiard Parlor Patron
Jon Kasdan
as Barboy
Dale West
as Station Master
Al Trujillo
as Camp Foreman
Matt Beck
as McGee
Gary Dueer
as Dick Gird
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News & Interviews for Wyatt Earp

Critic Reviews for Wyatt Earp

All Critics (27) | Top Critics (3)

Wyatt Earp plays as if they took Tombstone and pumped it full of hot air. It involves many of the same characters and much of the same story, but little of the tension and drama

January 1, 2000 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

A correct film that throughout the footage manages to reach the sky. [Full Review in Spanish]

August 30, 2019 | Full Review…

Though handsome to look at (cinematography is by Owen Roizman), the movie is overlong, stately, and too detailed for its own good; director Kasdan claims his version if more accurate, which may be true, but it doesn't make for a good picture.

December 21, 2006 | Rating: C | Full Review…

A great Western that was unfairly disparaged back in 1994. The authentic Wyatt Earp is actually a much-better film than the pulpier, more-popular Tombstone.

January 25, 2006 | Rating: 4/4

Costner's still shouting, but it's hard to hear him from all the way back there in 1940.

July 27, 2004 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

...hiding in this three-hour-plus extravaganza is a good two-hour movie. Too bad it's so hard to find.

June 1, 2004 | Rating: 6/10 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Wyatt Earp

Good film hampered by over length.

jay nixon
jay nixon

Super Reviewer


After Kevin Costner's surprise hit "Dances with wolves" Hollywood considered him the king of Westerns. So it does not come as a surprise that him and director Kasdan tried to tackle the story of one of the great legends of that era. Some of the (beautifully filmed) shots seem to come right out of Costner's own movie. But this film starts out with Earp's youth and takes its time getting to Dodge City, a sheriff star and Doc Holliday. The cast is excellent and full of great names, but Dennis Quaid (who hungered himself down for the Doc role) steals every scene he is in. Sadly, the film is overly long, it would have been a great 2.5 hours movie. As it is, there is still an interesting characterization of a man who became a legend without being a shiny, perfect hero. He is flawed and sometimes even unlikable, much like most of the other characters. But that gives the film a much more realistic feel than most others from the genre. It also helps that James Newton Howard wrote one of the best Western scores ever. If only the film was a tdad shorter.

Jens S.
Jens S.

Super Reviewer

Kasdan and Costner's version is indeed less B movie than Tombstone, made a year earlier, and is long but still effective once you get past the self-importance. What stands out particularly is how nobility is reached for by less than noble characters, which is as good a way to recall the West as any.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

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