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Louis J. Gasnier
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Gary Cooper is just beginning his starring film role career , but he already dominates a scene . He has not gotten to the familiar 'aw shucks -casual approach ' to every circumstance . Here he is straight up and he is good in this mode . When he displays vengeance , you feel it . Even a casual observer could tell this was a star who would be around for a long time .
Thelma Todd was beautiful as ever and she too could take over a scene . She more than held her own against Cooper in their better scenes together or maybe it was the other way around . But she could get the viewer into her thoughts .
William Powell did an adequate job . He did not have that same charisma as Cooper and it was apparent in his and Coopers scenes together . Eyes followed Cooper . Powell was starting to exhibit his urban , sophisticated charm , but it too was not developed in this stage of his career .
Ernie Adams does a creditable job. He would be part of the Gower Gulch Gang that would make him recognizable to every B western fan during the Golden era of B westerns .
The photography is excellent and showcases the locations very well . The action is good until the last part of the film . Then the pace crawls . Some scenes at the end are so predictable and are far too prolonged . It would have been better with more taut editing .It really lost its way in the scene for having Cooper go on the raid . This was extremely weak in why he wasn't at the front .
Although this was an A western for Paramount , it has a B western feel to the plot . But it has to be accepted for being just that - a well made , above average B western . Paramount would excel in this with the William Boyd ( Hopalong Cassidy ) series .
No Cooper fan should miss seeing this film . It is good also for a Thelma Todd fan . It is even good for a William Powell fan . It is good for a western film fan , but there have been much better westerns made on a much smaller budget . This is a rare film and should be in every western collectors library .
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