Talbot uses a phony land grant to rule thirteen million acres, taxing everyone heavily and evicting those who won't pay. The Three Mesquiteers becomes mysterious "night riders" to fight ... See full summary »
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Robert N. Bradbury
Frank McGlynn Jr.
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Talbot uses a phony land grant to rule thirteen million acres, taxing everyone heavily and evicting those who won't pay. The Three Mesquiteers becomes mysterious "night riders" to fight this evil. Written by
Ed Stephan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
[the outlaws are shooting through the windows of the building where the townsmen have holed up]
Well, they're askin' for it!
Yeah. Let's give 'em an answer.
[the townsmen return fire]
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The value of this today can be found in two things: the action -- that is, the obligatory saloon brawl, shootouts and horseback chases are all competent, and are filmed competently.
The writing: the writer places himself in this -- as 'the Forger'-- and through his 'writings' he pulls the villain's strings. The storytelling centers on the notion of changing identities -- Douglas playing an ex-con, who becomes a card shark, who assumes the mantle of 'the Don'.
And the heroes play the 'three Mesquiteers', who assume the identities of the 'Capequeros', who assume the identities of henchmen, who assume the 'identities' of corpses. It all resolves when the 'true identities' are revealed, and the villain is forced to extricate himself out of his false exterior through 'writing'.
On the whole, this is not a very good Western...the screenplay, acting and dialogue are horrible. Sherman has to get poor marks too, for giving all of this a pass. Ironically, it would take a Kurosawa to utilize Western themes and turn them into great storytelling, a la "Seven Samurai".
When you watch this, you can see where ideas came from for such spoofs as "Blazing Saddles" and "Three Amigos!".
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