|Index||3 reviews in total|
I've owned this film on 16mm for 37 years or so. It's always been a big hit with kids and most adults whenever I've shown it. There are plenty of familiar faces and old time second-string actors to jog the memories of older folks. The plot is silly, but who cares? If you like goofy comedies, you just might like this one. Kids in the family love it and have always requested this film to be shown at our gatherings; in that respect it is somewhat timeless. No polished humor or dialogue here, just a lot of smiles and quite a few laughs. At 45 or so minutes running time, it's just long enough to be very enjoyable without dragging on. Don't know if this is on VHS or DVD, but it might be worth checking out if you find it.
I have to say I was pleasantly surprised viewing this film in the early
AM and finding out how good this 48 minute feature film was for
something done on a sandal string by Hal Roach, Jr.
Jimmy Rogers (who was the younger son of Will) and Noah Beery, Jr. are a pair of down on their luck cowboys that I don't think we saw anything close to until Burt Kennedy's The Rounders over 20 years later. These two galoots don't even have horses, they're getting around the country in an old clunker that one still has to start with a crank.
They get themselves hit by a chauffeur driven car with Jack Norton as the perpetually soused multi-millionaire who's visiting one of his properties, a ranch that Joe Sawyer has been running for him and skimming the profits off. Norton may very well have been the inspiration for Dudley Moore's Arthur.
No use to go any further in describing this film, but it's a lot of laughs as only Hal Roach studios knew how to manufacture them on a dime.
It's also notable for the fact that Noah Beery, Jr.'s character name in the film is Pidge which was a nickname he was known by among his friends.
This film is really quite a scream.
Prairie Chickens (1943)
* 1/2 (out of 4)
Third and final film in Hal Roach's series features Jimmy Rogers and Noah Beery, Jr. once again playing cowboys who get mistaken for a guest of honor and chaos follows. I've now watched all three in the series and I've also now seen four films from the short career of director Hal Roach, Jr. Needless to say, his directing style isn't worth a damn so it's rather sad his father hired him over D.W. Griffith for One Million B.C.. With that said, this third film is weak throughout with an incredibly boring screenplay that doesn't give the actors a thing to do. The final third of the film takes place in a haunted house setting and everything here falls flat on its face.
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