Western : What Westerns Have You Seen? May/June/July/Aug/Sept Edition

Re: The Proud and The Damned (1972)

Not well regarded on this site, but nice to see it get an airing, a new one to me.


The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Re: The Proud and The Damned (1972)

It's not a great movie but there's a scene in there with Chuck Connors that I'll never forget.

err..well, maybe TWO scene's that I'll never forget....

"Anybody who doesn't wanna hang, step out and get shot!"

Re: 4 more Hopalong Cassidy's

Re: 3 more Hopalong Cassidy's

In Old Mexico (1938) This one is well thought of
The Frontiersmen (1938)
Sunset Trail (1939)

Kept William Boyd in work for a long time! The quality seems to have got better in the late 30s and into the 40s.

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Re: 3 more Hopalong Cassidy's

Yeah, seemed to have extended Boyd's career a couple of decades, only doing Hopalong stuff. The series was by far the best thing going on the B-western circuit, IMO. I discovered the movie series later then the rest (Autry, Mesquiteers, Rogers, etc), and was surprised at the quality compared to the more rough free-form fun those other series were. Definitely set the standard one bar higher.

Re: What Westerns Have You Seen? May/June/July/Aug - 2016 Edition.

Rough Riding Rhythm (1937)
Roll Wagons Roll (1940)
The Cowboy from Sundown (1940)
Take Me Back to Oklahoma (1940)
Trapped in Tia Juana (1932)
Trails of the Wild (1935)
The Singing Buckaroo (1937)
The Roaming Cowboy (1937)
Bar 20 Justice (1938)
Pride of the West (1938)

Thanks for watching these so we don't have to! Really enjoyed looking into these and reading what you had to say. No surprise to see the standard was raised with Selander in the chair, even if they look to hardly be must see movies.


The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Ride in the Whirlwind (1966)

Ride in the Whirlwind (1966)

This movie breaks away from the traditional mold of studio westerns and presents a gritty, sweaty, pragmatic view of life in the old west. It's a small film marked by minimalist, everyday dialogue and sparse location sets. The plot may be old hat but the production feels fresh for a movie released in the mid sixties. Stars brash up-and-comer Jack Nicholson, a sultry Millie Perkins and bolstered by Western's alumni Cameron Mitchell and Harry Dean Stanton.

"Anybody who doesn't wanna hang, step out and get shot!"

Re: Ride in the Whirlwind (1966)

Have it here somewhere in storage. Have a boo next time I pull something out.

Re: Ride in the Whirlwind (1966)

A tricky one to recommend with confidence, but I liked it and was very glad I watched it.

Obliged. Anyone for Checkers?

Ride in the Whirlwind is directed by Monte Hellman and written by Jack Nicholson. It stars Nicholson, Cameron Mitchell, Millie Perkins and Dean Stanton. Music is by Robert Jackson Drasnin and cinematography by Gregory Sandor.

Three honest cowboys stop to rest for the night at a cabin occupied by outlaws led by Blind Dick (Stanton). Upon awakening in the morning they find themselves surrounded by a vigilante posse and forced to flee as fugitives…

Filmed back to back with The Shooting in Kanab, Utah, Ride in the Whirlwind has something big to say without actually saying that much!

It's a sombre Western piece that deals in the tragedy brought about by a miscarriage of justice. It also finds Hellman and Nicholson reaching into the belly of the Western mythos and pulling out its guts to reveal a shallow hole of boredom and dirt covered grafters. This works to a large degree by way of the portrayals of weary cowboys (nice subtle performances by Nicholson and Mitchell really help) and the mundane ranch life of a family who are coerced into harbouring the fugitives. The air of authenticity and rich period detail, as well, is highly commendable. However, the laborious pace will annoy many and some actions and scenarios played out are a little hard to swallow. It's a mixed bag but very much a film that Western fans should see though. 7/10

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Vengeance (1964)

Vengeance (1964)

I've seen many movies in many genre's and I can honestly say I've never heard of any of the people involved in the production of this low, low budget western, (and I mean low budget western) But despite the low quality and reliance on stock footage the story wasn't actually that half bad. It maintained a steady, linear pace that didn't bog down. Though I wouldn't recommend it and I'll probably never watch it again, I certainly appreciate the effort it took to make it.

"Anybody who doesn't wanna hang, step out and get shot!"

Re: Vengeance (1964)

A new one on me. I will but it on the list. Thanks

Re: Vengeance (1964)

Sounds iffy, not much known about it and no reviews on site. Good find though mate

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Re: Vengeance (1964)

It was terrible, but the fan in me kept kept giving it a chance...

"Anybody who doesn't wanna hang, step out and get shot!"

Re: Vengeance (1964)

Yep, that's what we do

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Western Tv: WHISPERING SMITH "The Deadliest Weapon" 1961


WHISPERING SMITH "The Deadliest Weapon" 1961

WHISPERING SMITH was western star Audie Murphy's attempt at headlining a series. Murphy plays a member of the Denver Police Force in the late 1860's. The series follows Murphy and his partner, Guy Mitchell, as they chase various unsavoury types and bring them to justice. The series ran for 26 episodes between May and November 1961.

This episode is the seventh of the production run.

This one starts with Murphy and his partner, Mitchell attending a fancy party being thrown by Bartlett Robinson. The man is trying to get investors to join him in a gold mine venture. The Lawmen are there because Robinson had received a letter saying he would be killed.

The Law being on hand does not stop someone from secretly slipping poison into Robinson's drink. The man goes down in a heap and is lucky that a doctor, Don Keefer is also at the event. Robinson is soon back on his feet and giving the Lawmen holy hell. They were supposed to protect him.

The next day Robinson barely escapes having his head blown off by a pistol rigged up to a door. Robinson is really rattled now. Murphy and Mitchell are at a loss as to what is going on. Another note is found accusing Robinson of being a murderer. Robinson denies the accusation.

Robinson and the Law head to Denver where Robinson is to give a speech. Murphy has a look around the podium and discovers a bomb planted underneath. Of course Robinson is completely shaken by this. He is offered a cell in the jail house to hide out in. The Law now says they will check out everyone who might have a grudge with Robinson.

It all turns out to be an elaborate ploy by Murphy to get Robinson to admit to a murder from 19 years before.

This episode is not really one to set the barn a burning. One gets the feel that the whole production was rushed. Better writing and tighter direction might have helped.

Re: Western Tv: WHISPERING SMITH "The Deadliest Weapon" 1961

Whispering Smith (1961) - The Deadliest Weapon (1961)


The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Western TV: HAVE GUN - WILL TRAVEL "The Colonel and the Lady" 1957


HAVE GUN - WILL TRAVEL "The Colonel and the Lady" 1957

HAVE GUN – WILL TRAVEL was a Western series that ran on television between 1957 and 1963. The series was very popular and was always in the top ten of the television ratings. The series ran for a total of 225 episodes. Richard Boone headlines as "Paladin", a gun for hire, if the cause is right. Working out of San Francisco, Boone places ads in newspapers offering his services. $1,000 and he is your man. While handy with a gun or fists, he tries to settle the problem without violence. (Not very successfully as a general rule)

In this episode, the 11th the series, Boone is hired by a retired Army officer for a job. The man, Robert F Simon, is writing a book on the old west, and needs Boone to do a spot of detective work for him. He sends Boone to Lodestar, a mining town out in the middle of nowhere. He is to seek information on a particular woman. The stories seem to suggest she was of less than stellar character.

Boone however has trouble gathering any info on the woman. He is told to leave town at gunpoint and told never to return. Of course he pops back in using his own gun to root out some info. It turns out that the woman he is looking into was far from a "fallen woman". She was a hero that had saved most of the town during a cholera epidemic.

Boone sees a picture of the woman and realizes that it is the wife, June Vincent, of the man who hired him. Boone returns to Simon with the info but tells him that the woman in question was a true hero and anything else he heard was a lie.

This is an interesting story which plays out more like a straight detective tale than a western.

Re: Western TV: HAVE GUN - WILL TRAVEL "The Colonel and the Lady" 1957

Have Gun - Will Travel (1957) - The Colonel and the Lady (1957)

Detectives "R" Us!

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

WYOMING MAIL 1950 Good Duster



This Universal International production is set in 1869 just after the U.S. Postal Service started moving the mail by railway. These "post office on wheels," are being constantly robbed on a section or rail running through Wyoming Territory.

The Postmaster hires former Secret Service operative, Stephen McNally to work undercover. McNally is sent out to Wyoming to look into the robberies. The government figures it is the work of a well-organized gang with inside info. McNally is to contact another undercover man in Cheyenne. The undercover man is killed before McNally can reach Cheyenne.

McNally manages to trail some marked money to a man, Ed Begley. Begley happens to be the warden of the Territorial Prison. While digging around for info, McNally has time to romance attractive dance hall singer, Alexis Smith. With the help of a U.S. Marshall, McNally pretends to be a wanted bank hold-up man.

With the aid of the Marshall there is soon a posse after McNally. McNally is grabbed up and hauled off to the prison. His new contact is Armando Silvestre, who is playing a bounty hunter of Native Indian decent. Silvestre arranges to make periodic visits to check on McNally. Besides watching the warden, McNally is trying to meet up with inmate Whit Bissell. Bissell is a former bank robber whose money they believe was taken by the crooked warden, Begley.

Having collected the info he needs, McNally pulls a prison break with the aid of Silvestre. They take Bissell along to testify against Begley. Bissell however is fatally wounded during the getaway. Bissell does however put McNally onto who and where the train robbers are.

It does not take long and McNally is soon part of this gang, which includes, Gene Evans, James Arness, Felipe Turich and Richard Jaeckel. Much to McNally's surprise, it turns out that Alexis Smith is also part of the gang. To top that off, railway guard Howard Da Silva is also in the criminal mix.

The gang are up for another job and head off to hit the train. McNally manages to get a message to Silvestre to warn the railway of the job. The warning though is intercepted and Silvestre shot. The gang now knows that McNally is really with the law and he barely escapes by jumping off a cliff into a raging river.

The robbery goes sideways with most of the gang being killed. The viewer now learns that the real inside man was railway district superintendent, Roy Roberts. Roberts has been feeding the gang inside info on big cash deliveries by the post office.

Miss Smith by this time has decided that the criminal life is not to her liking. She is grabbed up and taken to the gang's cliff side hideout. There are a few quick horse chases, gun battles etc needed before the last of the nasty types is disposed of, and Miss Smith rescued. Of course McNally and Smith get married and ride off (by train) into the sunset.

This is a pretty entertaining B-western that moves along at a pretty good pace. There is the odd plot problem, but the pace covers these up nicely. The nice Technicolor is an added bonus for the watcher.

The director was long time B helmsman, Reginald LeBorg. LeBorg is best known for a string of Universal Studio horror films like, THE MUMMY'S GHOST, JUNGLE WOMAN, CALLING DR. DEATH and DEAD MAN'S EYES.

The cinematographer on this great looking duster was two-time Oscar nominated, one time winner, Russell Metty. Metty won his Oscar for his work on, SPARTACUS.

Look close and you will see future Hollywood leading man, Richard Egan in a small bit.

Well worth a look if you are fan of the genre.

Re: WYOMING MAIL 1950 Good Duster

Wyoming Mail (1950)

Excellent cast. Seems a little treasure. Good stuff Gord

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Western TV: THE RIFLEMAN "Seven" 1960


THE RIFLEMAN – Seven – 1960

This is episode 79 of the 1958 to 1963 western series that ran for 168 episodes. Chuck Connors headlines as a world class hand with a Winchester rifle. This of course ends up getting him in no end of trouble.

A prison wagon stops in North Fork to make a supply pickup. In the back are seven men on their way to a date with a hangman. Chuck Connors' son, Johnny Crawford, gets a bit too close to the wagon and is grabbed by Don Megowan, one of the prisoners. Connors cracks the guy on the hands with his rifle butt to get him to release Crawford. Megowan swears to get even with Crawford. Connors does not think much of the threat since he knows the prisoners are all for the rope.

As the guards, Paul Sorenson and John Cliff are feeding the prisoners, they are jumped and disarmed. The seven of them quickly head for the general store and arm themselves. They then hit the saloon and take everyone there, hostage.

Megowan wants his pound of flesh from Connors. He threatens to start killing hostages if Connors does not show. Sheriff Paul Fix is out gunned and asks Connors for help. By this time the prisoners have taken on a bit too much liquor and are not all that fast on the draw.

Gunfire splits the night and several of the bad guys go down in a heap. Megowan and Connors end up have a first rate donnybrook in the street before Connors gets the upper hand. The surviving bad guys are soon locked in jail.

A pretty good episode with plenty of violence involved. The 6 foot 7 Megowan makes for a most imposing villain. Also in the cast is Kurt Russell's father, Bing. Bing was a long working bit player in films and television with hundreds of credits.

Re: Western TV: THE RIFLEMAN "Seven" 1960

The Rifleman (1958) - Seven (1960)

Good stuff, Connors getting an airing the board this week.

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Django (1966)

Django (1966)

Django, you drag your coffin around, coffin around, coffin around.

Django is directed by Sergio Corbucci and it stars Franco Nero, José Bódalo, Loredana Nusciak, Ángel Álvarez and Eduardo Fajardo.

Django (Nero), dragging a coffin behind him, saves a woman from some bandits and soon finds himself in the middle of war between two factions - which he may be able to use to his advantage.

1966 was a stellar year for Spaghetti Westerns, Leone was putting the crown on his "Dollars" trilogy, Damiani produced a political firecracker and Sollima crafted one of the finest "manhunt" Oaters of this sub-genre. Then there is this, Django, a Pasta Western that is synonymous with the form.

I fought for the North!

Django is a treat, it's violent and cruel, funny and cheeky, and pleasing on the eyes and ears - so pretty much it contains all the best things that made the original wave of Spaghetti's so palatable. Undeniably it owes a "lot" to A Fistful of Dollars and Yojimbo, but it's still its own beast, a baroque Gothic piece of work that positively revels in nihilism. The graphic violence is wonderfully cartoonish, the iconography unbound, and in Nero - eyes likes chips of ice - the pic has one of the coolest and baddest men on the planet. Nusciak brings the sex and sizzle, coming off like a Spag Raquel Welch, whilst the villains are delightfully vile and scuzzy.

The setting is superb, a muddy cold hell of a town with a brothel as the fulcrum of the piece. Naturally there's a cemetery, which will play host to some of that iconography mentioned earlier. Religion gets short shrift, racial prejudice given a caustic once over, while it's worth mentioning there's more than a hint of social realism pulsing away as Corbucci brings the blood and thunder. OK! It's light in plotting, and it's not even Corbucci's best film, but the stylised violence, the visuals and a cracking soundtrack easily take you away from the fodder of the story.

It would spawn a multitude of rip-offs, name checks and influence a whole host of film makers, but this is the real deal. A Spag Western worth revisiting to see just when it was a sub-genre of quality, this before hundreds of poor band wagon jumpers began to soil the Spaghetti Western name. 8.5/10

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Re: Django (1966)

Back in 70's we used to go to the drive in on Fridays for the western triple bill. Lots of times they were Spaghetti type dusters. Seen so many that they all sort of run together. I do recall a few with Franco Nero being better than most. Thanks for the reminder, i'll add it to the list.

El Dorado (1966)

El Dorado (1966)

Big heavyweight movie all round.

Directed by Howard Hawks and starring John Wayne & Robert Mitchum, it's safe to say that El Dorado comes with some pretty tough credentials. Thankfully the expectation that comes with such a teaming is well and truly met. The plot is a familiar one in the context of Wayne & Hawks, if you have seen Rio Bravo? And liked it? The chances are you will like this one too.

Wayne is Cole Thornton, a hired gun who is asked to come on the payroll of El Dorado landowner Bart Jason (Ed Asner), who is involved with a land struggle with the MacDonald family. But Cole finds his old friend J.P. Harrah (Mitchum) is sheriff of the town, and J.P. advises his old pal that any involvement with Jason will result in J.P. enforcing the law. As it transpires, circumstances between the MacDonald's and Cole lead to Cole taking arms against Jason and his thug followers. So the sheriff, an old Indian fighter called Bull Harris (Arthur Hunnicutt) & a young gambler, who's handy with a knife, called Alan Bourdillion 'Mississippi' Traherne (James Caan), aim to bring down the might of Jason together.

Adapted from the book The Stars in Their Courses by Harry Brown, this was the second to last film that Howard Hawks would direct. And coming as it did in the late 60s it appears to be somewhat undervalued on the great director's CV. Probably due in no small part to the regard that Rio Bravo is held, of which this is pretty much a remake of. Yet, and I whisper it quietly, El Dorado is arguably the better film in terms of performances and the telling of Hawksian themes.

Given that Wayne & Mitchum were good friends away from the screen, it's no great surprise to find the chemistry between them is top dollar. They feed of each others' machismo to deliver a tough picture, yet one that's still joyously fun. The end result is a pic that manages to deftly portray many themes, such as loyalty, togetherness, forgiveness, respect and professionalism. The two principal stars are aided by both Caan and Hunnicutt, who offer a notable young & old side of the mythical West, with age, and ageing, a prominent point of note played out by the knowing director.

El Dorado looks to be a film where all involved are comfortable in what they are making. Nothing feels forced or hindered by pointless filler. It's true that the film is more in favour of dialogue over bravado action; though what action there is is adroitly handled by the old hands and the youthful Caan with his sawn off shotgun. This is a story without gimmicks, one which isn't ambling along as an excuse for a shoot out come the end. There's a lot to be said for good old fashioned story telling, and we get that here. Intelligence and sincerity throughout, and it's damn funny to boot, El Dorado is a fine movie that holds up very well in each and every decade that passes. 8/10

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Re: El Dorado (1966)

I saw this one before I ever saw Rio Bravo. I like both to the same degree. Every couple of years I pop this in the dvd player for a watch. It never fails to show me something new each time. (as does Rio Bravo)Wayne & Mitchum of course are perfect and look like they are having a great time.

Easily one of the best dusters made in the 60's. Thanks pal for the write-up!!!! Tick has been given.

Re: El Dorado (1966)

I always used to get El Dorado and Rio Bravo mixed up. But now I much prefer El D. Much better paced and Caan is good too.

"He was a poet, a scholar and a mighty warrior."

Re: El Dorado (1966)

Caan is the reason I like it more than Bravo, between him and Nelson it's a no brainer.

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)

Il buono, il brutto, il cattivo (1966)

I'm looking for the owner of that horse. He's tall, blonde, he smokes a cigar, and he's a pig!

It's debatable of course, since there are legions of fans of the first two films in Sergio Leone's Dollars Trology, but with each film there not only came a longer running time, but also a rise in quality - debatable of course!

Here for the third and final part of the trilogy, Leone adds Eli Wallach to the established pairing of Lee Van Cleef and Clint Eastwood, and brings all his tools of the trade to the party. Plot is slight, the three principals are on a collision course to find some buried gold, with each man having varying degrees of scuzziness, so how will it pan out?

Such is the genius of the narrative, it's a fascinating journey to undertake. The characterisations are ripe and considered, the various traits and peccadilloes beautifully enhanced, and with Leone being Leone, there's no shortage of cruelty and humour. He also brings his style, the close ups, long shots and some outstanding framing of characters in various situations.

The story encompasses The Civil War, which pitches our leads into "The Battle of Branston Bridge", where here we get to see just how great Leone was at constructing full on battle sequences. It's exciting, thrilling and literally dynamite, whilst Aldo Giuffrè as Captain Clinton turns in some memorable support.

The Euro locations pass muster as the Wild West, superbly photographed by Tonino Delli Colli, and then of course there is Ennio Morricone's musical compositions. It's a score that has become as iconic as Eastwood's Man With No Name, a part of pop culture for ever more. It mocks the characters at times, energises them at others, whilst always us the audience are aurally gripped.

There's obviously some daft coincidences, this is after all pasta world, and the near three hour run time could be construed as indulgent. But here's the thing, those who love The Good, The Bad and the Ugly could quite easily stand for another hour of Leone's classic. I mean, more barbed dialogue, brutal violence and fun! Great, surely!

From the sublime arcade game like opening credit sequences, to the legendary cemetery stand-off at the finale, this is a Western deserving of the high standing it is held. 9/10

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Re: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)

The first time I saw this was my first year of High School. Over the course of lunch time on 4-5 lunch breaks, the audio visual geeks showed this in the gym. Admission was 25 cents. Saw it again at a drive in 3-4 years later. Had the vhs tape and now the dvd. Thanks again for the reminder to dig this one out of storage.

Needless to say the tick was applied. Took me 15 minutes find your review!

Western Tv: TALES OF WELLS FARGO "The Bounty" 1957


TALES OF WELLS FARGO "The Bounty" 1957

TALES OF WELLS FARGO was a western series than ran for a total of 200 episodes between 1957 and 1962. Dale Robertson plays the lead as Jim Hardee. Hardee is an agent for the stage and cargo hauling outfit. When something goes wrong he is the man they send to fix it.

This episode is the 4th of the series. Wells Fargo man Dale Robertson is called up to Canada to identify a bandit killed there. The man was wanted for robbery and murder and there is a $5,000 reward. The reward is being claimed by gold prospector, Gerald Milton. Milton claims that the bandit had tried to rob him and Milton had shot in self-defence.

Robertson hops several northbound trains and makes his way to Moose Creek, Saskatchewan. He is met there by the local law, Northwest Mounted Police Sgt, Richard Shannon. Shannon shows the Wells Fargo man to the local ice house where the stiff is being kept.

Establishing the corpse's identity turns out to trickier than expected. The man's face is gone. Milton had shot the bandit in the face with a double barrelled shotgun. The only other way to id the stiff is through a missing finger. Said stiff is indeed missing the required digit.

Complicating the issue is Jean Howell. Miss Howell claims that she believes that the body is that of her missing brother. Robertson really can't be sure one way or the other about the body. His gut tells him that the whole set up stinks.

Robertson agrees to pay Milton the reward and writes the man up a bank draft. Milton will need to wait till the next day to cash the draft. Robertson tells the Mountie that he is sure the body is not that of the bandit. He gave Milton the draft as a ploy to buy time to investigate further.

Needless to say Milton scurries off for a meeting with the not so dead bandit, Anthony George. George had killed the look alike in order to throw off the American Law. If he was reported dead, he could return to the States. Collecting the $5,000 was just an added bonus.

Throwing the old monkey wrench into the plan is Miss Howell. She is bound and determined to find out if the body is indeed her brother. She is caught going through Milton's rooms by killer, George. George was hiding in the same rooms. Robertson, who was following Miss Howell, enters the same rooms. George gets the drop on Robertson and disarms him.

Now they all wait for the bank to open. Milton returns from the bank with an evil look. It seems that Robertson had written in a later date on the draft. George grabs up Robertson and sticks a gun in Howell's back. They are all going to take a stroll over to the bank so Robertson can fix the draft.

The Mountie, Shannon, is there waiting for just this visit. A pistol is slipped to Robertson by the bank teller who is in on the deal. George is drilled in the shoulder before he can fire and Milton is disarmed by the Mountie. George is going to get his neck lengthened for the murder of Howell's brother.

This one is a pretty sharp looking episode with former big screen man, George Waggner directing. Waggner's film work includes, OPERATION PACIFIC, THE FIGHTING KENTUCKIAN, GUNFIGHTERS and THE WOLF MAN. One time Oscar nominated John F. Warren handled the director of photography duties. One really must get a laugh out of how Canada is portrayed in these productions. Everyone is wearing lumberjack jackets and fur hats while speaking in a French accent.

Re: Western Tv: TALES OF WELLS FARGO "The Bounty" 1957

Tales of Wells Fargo (1957) - The Bounty (1957)

A goodie! Thanks Gord

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Western Tv: DECISION "The Virginian" 1958


DECISION "The Virginian" 1958

DECISION was a summer replacement series that ran during 1958. It featured one off episodes of various pilots that the networks hoped to run in the fall. They used this as a sounding board with the viewing public. This particular episode is a take on the novel, THE VIRGINIAN by Owen Wister. There had been four different film versions done before this, 1914, 1923, 1929 and 1946. The 1929 version with Gary Cooper is the most well-known.

In this take we have James Drury playing the title character. Drury is a former Confederate Officer who rode with J.E.B. Stuart's unit during the late war. He has taken a job out west on the Shiloh Ranch in Wyoming Territory. He arrives just after there has been 6 men murdered by a load of dynamite. The men had been working on a rail spur to the Shiloh ranch.

The owner of the ranch, Robert Burton, puts Drury right to work finding out who killed the men. Also in the mix here is owner's son, Steve Joyce, the ranch foreman, Andrew Duggan and the ranch cook, Jeanette Nolan.

Drury roots around poking his nose in where some, Duggan in particular, would rather he did not. It turns out Duggan runs a crooked card game and the owner's son, Joyce, is in deep to Duggan. He has even signed over his part of the ranch to Duggan. Joyce has been trying to earn enough cash so that he can go to medical school out east.

Drury soon puts the lad right about Duggan who has been using marked cards to cheat Joyce. They are then joined by Burton who it seems knew nothing about his boy's gambling. All hell soon breaks loose with guns yarded and lead flying. The owner, Burton collects a slug in the shoulder. Drury, who of course is quite handy with a pistol, cuts down Duggan and his men. Look close and you will see future "Bonanza" star, Dan Blocker as one of Duggan's thugs.

Burton decides to let the boy go to school and installs Drury as the new man in charge.

This one has that filmed, edited and ready to go inside a week look to it. The network then took their time deciding whether to put the series into production.

It would be 1962 before the series itself hit the airwaves. "The Virginian" was the first 90 minute western and was a huge hit. Drury would be the sole holdover from this episode. (Jeanette Nolan would join later in the run as a semi regular)

The series ran for 249 episodes between 1962 and 1971. It was, along with "Bonanza" and "Cheyenne" a staple at our house.

Worth a look if you are a fan of the series.

Re: Western Tv: DECISION "The Virginian" 1958

Decision (1958) - The Virginian (1958)

Just showing 13 episodes on site?

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Western Tv: "The Beauty and the Sorrow"1959 A.Totter, D. Paget


CIMARRON CITY – The Beauty and the Sorrow - 1959

This is the 18th episode from the 26 episode run of the western series, CIMARRON CITY. This series ran between 1958 and 1959. The star of the series was George Montgomery, a rich cattleman who is also the mayor of Cimarron City in the Oklahoma Territory. Regular cast members included, John Smith and Audrey Totter.

The local church has a money maker on their hands. They have a Paris trained choirmaster, Grant Richards, in charge of the church choir. The townsfolk now pack the place as they come to listen to the solo singer, drop dead beautiful, Debra Paget. The voice of an angel all agree.

She also has the effect of causing men to fall in love with her at the drop of a hat, or a slight smile in their direction. This needless to say causes more than a few knuckle dust ups. Particularly, between Paget's new beau, George Hamilton, and a love struck cowboy, Terry Becker. Paget is seems also gets pleasure from playing off one against the other.

In the mix here is also the choirmaster, Richards. He has a plan on how to win the fair Paget's hand. He meets with Becker in the tavern and offers a bit of advice to the not too bright cow puncher.

Richards suggests that he should pretend to make friends with his rival, Hamilton. "The better man won the woman" type thing. Then take Hamilton out for a walk to a spot just on the edge of town. There, Richards suggests, "Pull your gun and fire some shots at his feet, and tell him to leave town or else."

Becker does all this and walks Hamilton to the spot. Becker fires a few shots into the ground but is surprised when Hamilton drops dead. Becker quickly legs it back to town, grabs his horse and flees town. Needless to say, Richards had been waiting in the brush and fired the killing shot. Now he has eliminated both rivals for Paget. He covers Hamilton with leaves and brush.

The town's people wonder for a few days about what happened to Hamilton and Becker, but soon move on. Richards now makes his move on Paget and the two are quickly hitched.

The body of Hamilton is now found and Becker is assumed to have murdered him. Becker however sneaks back to town. He tells Miss Paget that he did not kill Hamilton, but he intends to discover the true killer. Becker however, just has no good luck at all, as Richards overhears his talk with Paget. Richards gives Becker a few inches of cold steel and buries him under the house.

Paget finally puts all the pieces together and asks her friend, rooming house owner, Audrey Totter for help. And just in time too as it turns out, Richards has decided to clean up the loose ends and Paget is next in line. The swine is soon under lock and key in the jail house.

The Quiet Gun (1957)

The Quiet Gun (1957)

Hands down, this has to be the best Forrest Tucker movie ever, the fact that he squares off against Lee Van Cleef is an added bonus to this very good, 50’s, B&W western, capped off by an excellent finale. Tucker plays a tough talking sheriff who takes on a shady, businessman-gunfighter (Cleef) while dealing with a town scandal involving his best friend (Jim Davis). Features Hank Worden, who seems to have continued his role from The Searchers. If you’re a fan of TV’s Gunsmoke and High Noon, you might like this one.

"Anybody who doesn't wanna hang, step out and get shot!"

Re: The Quiet Gun (1957)

Thanks for the reminder on this one. I'll give it a watch on the weekend if I have time.

Re: The Quiet Gun (1957)

Not seen myself, but good to see it appear on the board. tucker was in some very good Oaters.

Gunsmoke in Tucson (1958)
Fort Massacre (1958) (excellent)
Three Violent People (1956)
Rage at Dawn (1955)
Flaming Feather (1952)

All well worth a look by genre fans.

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Re: Western Tv: "The Beauty and the Sorrow"1959 A.Totter, D. Paget

Cimarron City (1958) - The Beauty and the Sorrow (1959)

Great stuff Gord

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Moonlight on the Prairie + Phantom Rancher + Young Buffalo Bill

Here's a random bunch.... also starting with the first of 6 solo efforts Roy Rogers did in 1940. The other 5 will follow the next day or two.

28. Moonlight on the Prairie (1935, D. Ross Lederman)
--- I'm not much for Dick Foran westerns. Made at the Warner lot, the production values are much higher then your average B-western, but the Foran is too clean for a cowboy. Didn't help that they made him sing the same song twice in a row! Needed to fill some time, huh? Was fun to see the Warner Bros stock players do a western. Not their natural element, but at least the dialogue was snappy. Or could have been had whoever wrote the script known how to write natural dialogue.

29. Phantom Rancher (1940, Harry Fraser)
--- A western the way they did it in the early 1930s. This one however is dated 1940 and this standard doesn't cut it anymore. Rough and lame production, with poor acting to boot. Among the last films with Ken Maynard as a solo star, and with good reason. He looked well passed it here. And how ridiculous they couldn't guess he was behind the mask... as he did nothing to change his very recognizable voice. Oh well, at least the pace was okay, even if the rest of this wasn't.

30. Young Buffalo Bill (1940, Joseph Kane)
--- Roy Rogers as a Young Buffalo Bill (1940). Well, not really. Roy Rogers can only do Roy Rogers, mild mannered and always with a song nearby. Still a okay little western. George 'Gabby' Hayes got a few good jokes and the plot moves along nicely. A little too standardized perhaps as a franchise quickie, but I've seen 'em done a lot worse.

Roy Rogers 1940

31. The Carson City Kid (1940, Joseph Kane)
--- Roy Rogers as The Carson City Kid (1940). What make this one stand out is that it's a rare western where Bob Steele the bad guy! Made for a decent entry in the Rogers series, but most of all the disappointment at a chance lost. Could have made use of the Steele angle a lot better once they talked him into changing sides. He was a good baddie in Of Mice and Men (1939), so they could have done a more convincing job of it home in the west.

32. The Ranger and the Lady (1940, Joseph Kane)
--- Wish they'd given more time to the old-timers George 'Gabby' Hayes & Si Jenks what a pair they made! Gabby as a Texas Ranger and kicking ass was a real make-out moment! Otherwise The Ranger and the Lady (1940) is a okay Roy Rogers franchise film, also assisted by strong lady Julie Bishop. In a way, with all the characters Rogers sort of ends up in the background, but he does get to sing a beautiful song as usual.

33. Colorado (1940, Joseph Kane)
--- Got to love George 'Gabby' Hayes playing hard to get! Anyway, Colorado (1940) has got Roy Rogers hunting his outlaw brother through the state. Not too thrilling, but I liked that little piece of acting by Rogers at the end there. Nice touch of sadness in his eyes.

34. Young Bill Hickok (1940, Joseph Kane)
--- Roy Rogers is the young "Wild" Bill Hickok in this one. And like before when he's taken the identity of a famous person, he's still simply the sweet singing Roy Rogers. Didn't get too excited about this one, but teaming George 'Gabby' Hayes with Calamity Jane (Sally Payne) made it lively at times!

35. The Border Legion (1940, Joseph Kane)
--- Borrows a famous storyline about a doctor being kidnapped to fix-up a gang leader, but quickly turns into a very regular western, though it was fascinating to see Roy Rogers act like a doc for a short while. The biggest waste was George 'Gabby' Hayes hardly been given anything worth wild to do. At least that gave Rogers and baddies Joe Sawyer & Jay Novello some decent screen time without this ever becoming one of Rogers more memorable films.

Re: Roy Rogers 1940

The Carson City Kid (1940)
The Ranger and the Lady (1940)
Colorado (1940)
Young Bill Hickok (1940)
The Border Legion (1940)

I never realised that Rogers and Kane had such a productive relationship!


The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Re: Moonlight on the Prairie + Phantom Rancher + Young Buffalo Bill


Re: Moonlight on the Prairie + Phantom Rancher + Young Buffalo Bill

Moonlight on the Prairie (1935)
Phantom Rancher (1940)
Young Buffalo Bill (1940)

Ouch! Cheers H

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

I was better off with the Indians!

Duel at Diablo (1966)

Well, the plot doesn't make much sense, the production is flawed, and individual scenes fall flat, but make no mistake - I do love this movie. It has great star appeal, fine location scenery, and an undeniable narrative drive, and should satisfy fans of the genre.

James Garner stars as a frontier scout; in between Maverick and Rockford, Garner had quite a good career in films, and he's in his grim & intense mode here. Sidney Poitier is effective as a dandy but capable ex-sergeant, sort of a good-natured foil to Garner's sweaty, dusty, squinting. I've often wondered what the movie would be like if the roles were reversed.

Dennis Weaver co-stars as an upstanding citizen with a bit of a dark side; tired of limping around the Gunsmoke set and making coffee for Marshall Dillon, Weaver is long and lean, and cuts a fine figure as a cowpoke. His wife, played by Swedish actress Bibi Andersson, has been kidnapped by Apaches, creating an edgy subplot. It is odd to see Miss Andersson in an American Western (her other film in 1966 was the Ingmar Bergman psychological classic, Persona) but she does well with what she's asked to do.

Rounding out the cast are British actor Bill Travers (his other film in 1966 was Born Free) as an ambitious officer, and veteran character player John Hoyt, who gives a dignified performance as the Apache chief Chata. The supporting cast is disappointingly faceless, with the exception of William Redfield as an Eastern sergeant trying to understand the way of the West. It would have been fun to see a few familiar faces among the troopers.

As the initiated know, you can't discuss Duel at Diablo without mentioning the singular Neil Hefti score. Hefti - best known for his Batman theme song - was a jazz and swing trumpeter, and his unusual score manages to suit the film and the times perfectly, and is inextricably linked with the viewing experience, and perfectly suited to this movie.

The story is a muddled affair about raw troops, Apaches on the warpath, and the apparently pointless need for the two to intersect. Based on a novel by Marvin Albert (who also wrote The Law and Jake Wade and Rough Night in Jericho) the characters have enough depth to overcome the plot shortcomings. Ultimately, the characters and situations are interesting enough that you don't much care how they wound up in their predicament, and the subplots keep the story bubbling along. The violence, social awareness, and adult situations make this a fairly grown-up western, and are probably indicative of the 1966 release date.

Director Ralph Nelson has his ups and downs; known primarily for Lilies of the Field and, later, Charly, he doesn't seem to have the he-man background for a gritty western, but he makes it work. Mostly. The knife-through-the-screen bit that opens and closes the picture is kind of keen, the picture moves along a good clip, and the actors all seem comfortable and the roles are well defined. On the other hand, the first big fight scene is poorly set up, and doesn't make much sense. (How do the Indians in foxholes see their chief give the signal to attack? Why don't the troopers see the chief? Why didn't Poitier see the mounted Indians? etc., etc.) Some of the 'night scenes' look as if they were filmed during the day, with a filter.

But those are just quibbles. The star power and force of the narrative carry the day, and Duel at Diablo should more than satisfy fans of the genre. I first saw it when I was ten or so, on CBS Thursday Movie of the Week, and I've seen it half a dozen times over the years, yet I was still thrilled to catch it on MGM the other day. That Neil Hefti score just thrums and resonates deep down inside, and helps make Duel one of my favorite 60s Westerns. Not one of the best, perhaps, but one of the most watchable and satisfying. I should probably give it a 7/10, but I'm going to give it an 8, for an unpredictable combination of mildly incongruous elements that somehow come together and just plain work. And just try to get that Hefti score out of your noggin. Just try.

Re: I was better off with the Indians!

I don't know how I missed this but it goes on my list of Westerns to Find.

Thanks for bringing it up.

"Anybody who doesn't wanna hang, step out and get shot!"

Re: I was better off with the Indians!

I recall thinking this was very violent at the time. An unusual cast for a western - Travers, Poitier, Andersson - but the characters work and despite the flaws, somehow it's a very entertaining movie. Seeing it a second time a few years ago it held up well. I have some reservations about the score, but at least 7/10.

"He was a poet, a scholar and a mighty warrior."

Duel at Diablo

Duel at Diablo (1966)

Excellent review. Think we pretty much agree, I wasn't as bothered about the logic holes as yourself, in fact I really thought the warfare sequences were well played out. I'll piggyback your review and we hopefully will get some first timers interested in catching it.

You will be alive when I bury you in the grave of my son.

Duel at Diablo is directed by Ralph Nelson and co-adapted to screenplay by Michael M. Grilikhes & Marvin H. Albert from Albert's own novel, Apache Rising. It stars James Garner, Sidney Poitier, Bibi Andersson, Dennis Weaver and Bill Travers. Music is by Neal Hefti and cinematography by Charles F. Wheeler.

Searching for the man responsible for killing his Comanche wife, Jess Remsberg (Garner) is crossing the desert when he rescues Ellen Grange (Andersson) from the Apache and returns her to her husband Willard (Weaver) at Fort Creel. After a run in with Toller (Poitier), an ex-trooper who now makes his living supplying and breaking in horses for the cavalry, both men wind up joining a cavalry party carrying supplies to Fort Concho. With the Apache angry about their treatment by the white man, this party are at great risk travelling through Diablo Canyon. And so it proves, where joined by the Granges, secrets will out and Apache will attack….

Obviously intended to be driven by a strong racial dynamic between whites and Indians, Duel at Diablo never really follows through on its promise of something more cutting. With full development instead of snatches of politics, both sexual and racial, this could have been thematically as dynamite as the picture is as a Western war piece. However, its strengths are many, and Western fans after violence and reams of action get fully paid up here. Nelson's (Soldier Blue) film barely pauses for breath as the director crams as much in as he can, fisticuffs, pursuits, shoot outs, warfare, torture, explosions and lots of blood, all of which get their respective day in the sun. The stunt work is top notch and the writing at least allows for some intelligent tactical thinking to be shown by both sides during the Diablo Canyon siege.

It's also rich in characterisations: Remsberg is driven by revenge (Garner channelling Randy Scott from the Boetticher movies): Ellen, once captured by the Apache and taken as a bride and a mother to a half-breed baby, she's treated like a disease by the town folk: Willard, her husband, carries that burden, but not with ease: Toller, a black man who has served his time in the army, he now wears dandy clothes and answers to nobody: Lt. Scotty McAllister (Travers), the archetypal hero in waiting officer. All are interesting characters, and crucially they are given very good portrayals by the actors. Wheeler expertly photographs the Kanab, Utah, locale to form a beautiful, yet imposing, backdrop, and Hefti's score is very different, a blending of styles, it's part spaghetti, part traditional and part Hippy Woodstock!

A ripper of an entertainer that's better than the standard Cavalry v Indians Oater the plot synopsis suggests. But you will most likely come away thinking it should have had more conviction thematically. 7.5/10

The Spikeopath - Hospital Number 217

Re: Duel at Diablo

Great review, bud. Love the reference to the Ranowns; Garner does seem to be channeling Scott.

It is unusually violent for its time, I think. It also looks to me as if Poitier is enjoying himself, taking a short break from the socially conscious films that were his métier (his next three films would be In the Heat of the Night, To Sir With Love, and Guess Who's Coming to Dinner.)

Think we pretty much agree, I wasn't as bothered about the logic holes as yourself, in fact I really thought the warfare sequences were well played out.

Yep; we do agree. There was only one scene that truly bothers me - the Indians, hidden in ambush and looking ahead at the troopers, somehow see their chief give the signal to attack, yet the troopers, out in the open and riding forward, don't see him.

Young Billy Young (1969)

Young Billy Young (1969)

A notorious, town-taming sheriff seeks vengeance against the man who killed his son. From the opening title song sung by Robert Mitchum to it's jingling soundtrack, this quirky western had a lot more sand than I expected with Mr. Mitchum leading the charge. I wasn't too impressed with Robert Walker Jr. in the title role, but the movie was buoyed by a supporting cast which includes, David Carradine, Angie Dickinson, and in a limited but important role, Western's favorite, John Anderson.

"Anybody who doesn't wanna hang, step out and get shot!"