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So You Want to Be a Cowboy (1951)

Approved | | Comedy, Western, Short | 14 April 1951 (USA)
Joe McDoakes and his wife Alice attend a western movie and George soon has himself in the movie shown on the screen as Jump-Along Skip-Along McGurk, western terror pitted against an outlaw ... See full summary »

Director:

(as Richard Bare)

Writer:

(as Richard Bare)
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Cast

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Storyline

Joe McDoakes and his wife Alice attend a western movie and George soon has himself in the movie shown on the screen as Jump-Along Skip-Along McGurk, western terror pitted against an outlaw and his six henchmen, all of whom are named Tex. Since Warners wasn't making any series westerns at the time and since this short was poking fun at such, the lobby poster at the theater was from a Columbia Durango Kid film. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

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Genres:

Comedy | Western | Short

Certificate:

Approved
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Release Date:

14 April 1951 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs

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Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Connections

Follows So You Want a Raise (1950) See more »

Soundtracks

I Know That You Know
(uncredited)
Music by Vincent Youmans
Played during the opening credits and at the end
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User Reviews

 
Not "Oh, Wow!"; but rather "But Joe, What Took You So Long!"
15 February 2016 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

TO THE GENRE of the Western Movie came the spoofers like Chaplin (THE PILGRIM), Keaton (THE PALEFACE), Will Rogers, Harold Lloyd (THE KID BROTHER), Laurel & Hardy (WAY OUT WEST), The Marx Brothers (GO WEST) and many others. So it came to pass that the MC DOAKES Series' production team decided that this sort of lampooning was fit for their favourite everyman.

IN MEETING THIS challenge, the series found itself in sort of a double parody. First of all, every entry in the series presents us with our hero and surrogate basically trapped into venturing from the relative comfortable safety of everyday life in the mid 20th Century and risking his dignity and manly superiority in full display to all.

FIRST OF ALL, the great American custom of 'Movie Night' at the neighborhood theatre is put on full, close-up and merciless examination. The enthusiasm of Joe, Alice (Phyllis Coates and the rest of the patrons make no apologies for their almost childlike enthusiasm.

THE SECOND LAYER of parody lies in the revelation through Joe, that we all live in our fantasies and are enabled to do so in the realm of the darkened movie house. Being truly red-blooded and American, the only universally held first choice is that of the Six Gun Heroes of the Old West.

THE METHOD OF fusing this twofold sojourn into the realm of parody is accomplished by borrowing from the earlier masterworks of Buster Keaton. Much like Buster's protagonist in SHERLOCK JR., the script called for Joe to be transported into the heart of the movie itself.* ONCE IT WAS established that the hero and guy who would "Get the Girl" would be 'Hop, Skip and Jump Along Mc Doakes, the usual series of properly genre proper gags and short scenes was concocted.

AN ENERGETIC AND even manic pace was adopted (have only 10-11 minutes to get it all in). Added to what wasn't really a small cast for a short subject. For good measure, the raiding of Warner Brothers film vaults was employed by their infusion of plenty of fittingly tailored Western stock footage.

BY VIRTUE OF its making a spoof of the "Cowboy Picture", we have to give this little movie high marks. Writer/Director Richard L. Bare is to be commended for pushing the envelope and broadening Mr. George O'Hanlon's favourite character's reach.


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