The Treasure Of The Sierra Madre is the first adventure film to fully discard the anthropological subtext of its forebears, replacing their use of the quest, or travelogue, as a pretext for a panoply of exotic gore, with a narrative in which the quest is overwhelmingly subordinated to its destination and, more strikingly, to the interaction between its participants - a pair of drifters (Humphrey Bogart & Tim Holt) and a seasoned prospector (Walter Huston), whose compelling, occasionally startling transformations bear little resemblance to earlier ciphers, producing the closest possible approximation to a chamber adventure film, with most of the action restricted to the hundred square metres upon which they stake their claim. That said, the boys-own frivolity remains, most memorably in Huston's admission that he only needs gold to spend "the better part of my time reading comic strips and adventures stories", but more pervasively in the virtual absence of women; or, rather, the deflection of femininity into the claim itself: "We wounded this mountain. It's our duty to close her wounds. It's the least we can do to show our gratitude for all the wealth she's given us....she's been alot better to me than any woman I ever knew." Similarly, there is a subplot in which the prospect of Indian torture is foregrounded, although this is arguably offset by the elaboration of a peaceable settlement in the third act, which undercuts its voyeuristic frisson. However, all these factors ultimately serve to nuance the relationship between the three men, culminating with the arrival of a mysterious stranger, whose status as a source of excitement, or danger, is quickly subsumed into his ability to complicate the financial, logistical and fraternal dynamic between them, paving the way for a conclusion that rivals The Pardoner's Tale in gravitas.