Light-hearted, old-style romance about a farm-hand who arranges to buy a pair of mules from his employer. No one is able to handle the mules and he must train them. Adding to his dilemma, ... See full summary »
Light-hearted, old-style romance about a farm-hand who arranges to buy a pair of mules from his employer. No one is able to handle the mules and he must train them. Adding to his dilemma, he pursues his boss's daughter who gets her kicks out of keeping him guessing about her true feelings. Of course, at the end he tames both the mules and the girl. Written by
Kieran Lee <email@example.com>
Much better than its reputation would lead you to believe...
George Agnew Chamberlain's book about determined farm boy in rural small town America training two prize-winning mules to drive; pretty soon, he and the two stubborn creatures are hauling out logs from the forest and making fifteen dollars a day, which irks the man he bought them from as well as his own evil step-brother. Director F. Hugh Herbert, who also adapted the screenplay, does a terrific job setting the mood of the piece--frisky but also angst-ridden. Lon McCallister is the polite juvenile battling with his father's crude wife and her son for his dad's respect, later butting heads with farmer Tom Tully (in a convincingly angry, blow-hard performance). Although this is ostensibly a simple tale of a boy's love for two mules, there's a lot of busy melodrama going on. The scenario isn't overly-folksy, and the villains (including Anne Revere, in her least-sympathetic role ever) are surprisingly effective. The romance sub-plot between Tully's blonde, beautiful daughter June Haver and skinny McCallister doesn't quite work as well (she seems a bit out of his league); thankfully, little Natalie Wood is around a lot, spying on her neighbors and getting all the juicy gossip. Good contract-picture from Fox has an undeserved poor reputation (with its title causing most of the derision), but I was entertained from start to finish. Look fast for Marilyn Monroe as 'Betty' on the church steps. *** from ****
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