Often misrepresented as an entry in Paramount's Zane Grey series, Showdown is actually based on a novel by Houston Branch. In his never-ending search for new oil sources, wildcat driller Cardan (George Bancroft) lets nothing get in his way -- least of all his chief rival Winter (Fred Kohler Sr.), a scout for a big-time oil firm (it isn't named Standard Oil, but it might as well be). Drilling a new well in the tropics, Cardan spends his evenings with his girlfriend Goldie (Helen Lynch), whom Winter tries to steal upon his arrival. The two old enemies also quarrel over the affections of Sibyl Shelton (Evelyn Brent), the beautiful wife of aristocratic Wilson Shelton (Neil Hamilton). Upon realizing that Winter intends to lay claim on his well should a gusher come in, Cardan begins cooking up schemes to dispose of his rival. But the ultimate showdown between Cardan and Winter takes place because of Sybil, who isn't too keen about being First Prize in a macho-man "contest."
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