An Eastern Westerner offers exactly what the title promises, a displaced dude forced to deal with life in the wild & woolly West. There's a girl (of course) and a bully (ditto), and it all culminates in a chase. Harold follows in the footsteps of Douglas Fairbanks, who played a boyish character in a similar situation in a 1917 feature appropriately titled Wild and Woolly. But although Harold is a fish out of water in this instance he's no bonehead, and it's refreshing to see that, like Doug before him, he quickly adapts to the difficulties he faces, uses his brains, and manages to come out on top. At the same time, he has a sense of humor and isn't arrogant. When his attempts to impress leading lady Mildred Davis backfire and she laughs at him, Harold is big enough to join in and laugh at himself, and we like him for it. This likability wasn't always present in Lloyd's earlier films, where gags were all-important and his behavior was sometimes callous. In An Eastern Westerner Harold has graduated from clown to hero.
Beyond its value as a laugh-provoker this movie should also be of interest to fans of early Westerns, for the filmmakers evidently took care with production details to a degree that is surprising in a two-reel comedy. This really looks like a Western! The town of Piute Pass (where, we're told, "it's considered bad form to shoot the same man twice in the same day") is as dusty and rough-looking as the town of Hell's Hinges, and the bully of Piute Pass could appear in a William S. Hart epic without having to change costume. Sequences in the saloon involving fighting, card-playing and dancing could be excerpted and passed off as clips from serious Westerns of the era. While these production details are gratifying, this engaging comedy is already well worth seeing as a fine example of what made Harold Lloyd a top star.