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20 Mule Team (1940)

Approved | | Western | 3 May 1940 (USA)
It is 1892 in Death Valley and the yields from the Borax ore are getting so small that refining it is a losing proposition. The only thing that will save the company is a new deposit of ... See full summary »

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Writers:

(story), (story) | 3 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Skinner Bill Bragg, an Alias of Ambrose Murphy
...
...
Josie Johnson
...
Jean Johnson
...
Stag Roper
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Mitch
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'Jackass' Brown
Arthur Hohl ...
Salters
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Chuckawalla
...
Henry Adams
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Marshal
Oscar O'Shea ...
Train Conductor
...
Stockholder
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Storyline

It is 1892 in Death Valley and the yields from the Borax ore are getting so small that refining it is a losing proposition. The only thing that will save the company is a new deposit of high grade Borax, and Bill has a pouch of it that he got from a dead prospector that he buried on the road. Roper knows the value of the strike could be worth millions, but he needs Bill to find the prospectors' claim so they can record it and become rich partners. While Roper has no intention of cutting Bill in on the millions, he also has his eye on young Jean. Josie sees Roper for the scalawag that his is and it means trouble in Furnace Flat. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Beery . . . a whip-totin' . . . gun-blazin' son of a coyote . . . from the orneriest end of the desert! See more »

Genres:

Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

3 May 1940 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Twenty Mule Team  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

(Sepiatone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film received its initial television broadcasts in Philadelphia Wednesday 6 March 1957 on WFIL (Channel 6) followed by New York City Friday 29 March 1957 on WCBS (Channel 2) and Los Angeles Sunday 21 April 1957 on KTTV (Channel 11); in San Francisco it was first telecast 7 February 1958 on KGO (Channel 7). See more »

Quotes

Skinner Bill Bragg: Let's scratch some sand over him and keep the buzzards from picking him to pieces.
Piute Pete: Pretty soon wind comes some more, blow sand off and coyotes dig him up just the same.
Skinner Bill Bragg: Ain't you got no respect? It's the idea of the thing. Now get to scratching.
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Connections

Referenced in Northward, Ho! (1940) See more »

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User Reviews

So where's the story of the 20 Mule Teams?
9 April 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Ordinary western hews to the standard Beery persona and is rife with stereotypes.

More interesting for its cast than anything in its script. It has only the most tangential association with how the original 20 Mule Teams actually ran, the setting is just a device to pin the story on.

Beery is the grizzled sad sack that he always played when he found himself in chaps but if you like him then you know what to expect. What is of more interest is seeing him costarring with his real life nephew Noah Beery, Jr., in their only appearance together. Anne Baxter makes her debut, only 17 at the time she's a bit callow but self possessed in front of the camera and it's clear she would go far. The standout in the cast is Marjorie Rambeau, she's better than the standard material deserves actually.

Best for Beery fans but anyone who likes westerns won't find it too bad.


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