I'll be quite up front about this one--I am NOT an Arthur Askey fan and it was a very hard sell for me. Perhaps it would help if I was British or if I lived back in the 1940s or 50s. All I know is that I've seen several of his movies and I find his them difficult to love.
Surprisingly, the film started off very well and I thought I might just like this one. Askey runs a pub in England and learns that he might be about to inherit a large sum from his grandfather, 'Wild Bill' Ramsbottom. Wild Bill was quite a he-man and lived the cowboy life in Canada--and Bill (Askey) is excited about following in his granddad's footsteps (even though the very diminutive Bill is a tiny man, unlike his bigger-than-life grandfather). The problem is that an evil baddie, Black Jake, is determined to steal Bill's inheritance...even if it means shooting him.
When Bill eventually makes it to Canada, the quality of the film slipped dramatically. Up until then, I actually enjoyed it--which really surprised me. But the second half of the film had some serious problems--the most important of which is that it wasn't funny. It also had a lot of story elements that simply were undeveloped or were stupid. For example, Black Jake had MANY chances to kill Bill but never did get around to trying it--even though again and again he said he would. He simply didn't act very bad--and that's a problem. He acted more like a villain in a kid's movie--all bluster. Also, Bill became a deputy and captured Black Jake....yet oddly he's let go and the film never talked about this. After all, Black Jake threatened to kill Bill and even tried...and he was never put in jail when he was captured?! Heck, if I was Deputy Bill, I would have just shot him in the face and been done with it! There also were some completely irrelevant story lines that didn't make sense and were never complete--such as some circus animals that escaped and were running amok in the West and then just disappeared from the film. Add to this some singing that often disrupted the momentum of the film (and the STYLE just didn't fit at all into a western), a cheap joke involving Bill's friend who stutters and some dopey Indians and you have a film that just left me very cold. Overall, while the plot had promise, the film slowly fizzled as it progressed to a less than satisfying ending.
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