Shirley is the orphaned survivor of an Indian attack in the Canadian West. A Mountie and his girlfriend take her in. Everybody suffers further Indian attacks and the Mountie is saved from ... See full summary »
Shirley is the orphaned survivor of an Indian attack in the Canadian West. A Mountie and his girlfriend take her in. Everybody suffers further Indian attacks and the Mountie is saved from the stake only by Shirley's intervention with the Indian chief. Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
Little orphan Shirley rescues brave mountie Randolph Scott...
Shirley's box-office appeal was on the wane by the time Fox put her in SUSANNAH OF THE MOUNTIES and obviously they were aware of this when they decided not to shoot this one in technicolor. Not sure, but I recall seeing a sepia tone version of this at a kiddie matinée revival years ago. However, all TV showings are in standard B&W.
Once again, Shirley starts the story as an orphan when Indians kill her parents and she's rescued by none other than Randolph Scott, a handsome mountie who, with his sweetheart (Margaret Lockwood), takes Shirley under his wing. What happens next is a predictable yarn that doesn't require much from any of the participants, especially Shirley, who neither sings nor dances, except for a brief (and charming) moment when she teaches a dance step to the mountie. And naturally, when the plot calls for her to rescue Scott (captured by nasty Indians), she becomes the little diplomat who saves the day.
Shirley and Scott worked together before in REBECCA OF SUNNYBROOK FARM and it's nice to see them paired again.
But the story is strictly formula for the "little orphan girl" theme that writers always came up with for Temple, and the feeble attempts at comedy relief are so obvious as to be unfunny. The script is a tedious thing and thankfully the weak romantic angle between Scott and Lockwood is kept to a minimum to let Temple have the spotlight.
At eleven or so, and just a bit chubby, she still has the dimpled charm that made her famous but has no opportunity to shine the way she did in her earlier films. Victor Jory shows some menace as an Indian, but none of the skirmishes seem very authentic. The humorous moments are no more than sad attempts at humor at the expense of native American Indians.
Summing up: One of Shirley's weaker vehicles, enjoyable only for die-hard Temple fans. Fortunately for Shirley, she still had THE LITTLE PRINCESS in release that same year.
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