|Index||3 reviews in total|
Tim Holt and Tom Tyler both veterans of the John Ford classic
Stagecoach return and reunite in this quality Tim Holt western Riders
Of The Range. The film finds Tim and Richard Martin as a couple
itinerant cowboys who help lady in distress Jacqueline White and her
brother Robert Clarke who are ranch owners.
If it ain't rustlers it's gamblers as saloon owner Reed Hadley starts accumulating IOUs from Willis who has a gambling problem. When he can't pay Hadley conceives of a nice scheme whereby Willis just turns over the cattle to Hadley for his IOUs with Tom Tyler doing the rustling. But for the unexpected presence of Tim and Chito it might have worked.
Hadley and Tyler aren't exactly bosom buddies and the alliance between gamblers and rustlers is an uneasy one.
Somebody at RKO was having an inside joke during this film because Tyler plays the Ringo Kid. And as any classic movie fan knows, the Ringo Kid was John Wayne's character in Stagecoach and he shot it out with Tom Tyler. And Holt who had the small role of the army lieutenant in Stagecoach has a showdown with the Ringo Kid at the climax of Riders Of The Range.
A nicely constructed Tim Holt B western with a little inside joke for the devoted fan.
Pretty good Holt-Martin oater. The boys are out to rescue ranchers White and Clarke from the clutches of bad guys Tyler and Hadley, that is, as long as they don't get arrested for murder first. This is a studio production (RKO), which means better resources than for most matinée Westerns. This shows up in the casting and locations. Hadley and Tyler make better bad guys than usual, though the rail-thin Tyler appears affected by the rheumatoid arthritis that troubled his later career. Also, easy-on-the-eyes White makes a good, gritty ranch boss, while the piney Big Bear locations east of LA provide welcome contrast to the familiar LA scrublands. Nothing special here, just solid Saturday afternoon entertainment, with some non-buffoonish humor smoothly added to the mix.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
For a run of the mill B Western, this one has a few slick moves that
make it fairly entertaining. First off, there's Harry Willis (Robert
Clarke) pulling that switch on the cattle rustlers to hide his own
involvement. Later on, Kansas Jones (Tim Holt) demonstrates his
shooting prowess with an impossibly accurate hit, knocking the gun out
of Ringo Kid's hand during a chase on horseback. What are the odds of
that happening? And then for once, the bad guy, again Ringo, actually
loses the three thousand dollar bundle he stole from villain Burrows
(Reed Hadley). It all conveniently works out to frame Kansas for
Burrows' murder, and it makes me wonder how anything like this could
EVER happen in real life. Oh well.
This is another effective team-up between veteran Tim Holt and his Mexican-Irish sidekick, Chito Rafferty (Richard Martin). In fact, we get Chito's full name here - Chito Jose Gonzalez Bustamante Rafferty. I'd like to see a flick that explains Chito's origin someday, I wonder if there is one. One thing about Chito, he never stops trying to romance the ladies. He meets his match here with Drusilla 'Dusty' Willis (Jacqueline White), who puts him in his place more than once as she tries to pull her brother Harry out of a jam with the bad guys.
Tim Holt rode a number of different horses throughout his Western movie days. By the looks of his steed in this picture, a palomino, I'd say it was Lightning who wasn't mentioned by name. However there's no doubt about the horse Chito was riding; in one scene he refers to him as Taco. You know, that only makes sense.
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