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Cecil B. DeMille
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Ranger Don Stuart fights a forest fire with timber boss friend Tana 'Butch' Mason, and finds evidence of arson. He suspects Twig Dawson but can't prove it. Butch loves Don but he, poor fool, won't notice her as a woman; instead he meets socialite Celia in town and elopes with her. The action plot (Don's pursuit of the fire starter) parallels Tana's comic efforts to scare tenderfoot Celia back to the city. Written by
Rod Crawford <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sit back and enjoy a movie that makes good use of the particular talents of Fred MacMurray, Paulette Goddard and Susan Hayward. Each has a role totally fitted to their screen persona and they make the most of their opportunities. What helps considerably are the lush production values--but don't expect too much credibility in the script that has the female stars fighting rather predictably over the hero while the subplot (about an arsonist methodically setting forest fires) gives the story some additional sparks. A particularly amusing sequence has the trio spending the night in the woods sharing the same blanket--rather risque stuff for '42!!
There's grandeur in the technicolor photography and stunning close-ups of Susan and Paulette to keep their fans happy. A catchy song number called "I Got Spurs That Jingle, Jangle, Jingle" became a top hit on the hit parade at time of the film's release.
Only real weakness is the ending which has Susan's character doing a real switcheroo--but it's not a film to take seriously in the first place and only meant to be entertainment--which it is.
Susan shows the kind of grit and spirit that enabled her to take on more complex roles later in her career and Paulette Goddard has a role tailor-made to show off her own brand of sophisticated charm. MacMurray is himself, nothing more, and it works every time.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful.
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