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Phantom Thunderbolt (1933)

A cowboy called The Thunderbolt Kid comes to the aid of a town that is being threatened by outlaws who don't want a railroad to go through the town.


Alan James


Forrest Sheldon (story and continuity), Betty Burbridge (story and continuity)




Complete credited cast:
Ken Maynard ... Ken 'Thunderbolt' Peters
Tarzan Tarzan ... Tarzan (as Tarzan the Wonder Horse)
Frances Lee ... Judy Lane
Frank Rice ... Nevady
William Gould ... Red Matthews
Bob Kortman ... One-Shot Mallory
Frank Beal Frank Beal ... Tobias Oldham
William Robyns William Robyns ... Henry Norton (as Bill Robyns)
Wilfred Lucas ... Eaton - Railroad President


Red Mathews and his gang are out to stop the railroad from coming to Coyote Gulch. When gunslinger Thunderbolt arrives in town, Banker Wingate tries to get him to take the job of kicking the gang out of town. Attracted to Judy Lane he accepts. He Succeeds once but is then captured just as the gang rides to town to break up the ceremony honoring the railroad president. Written by Maurice VanAuken <mvanauken@a1access.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A whirlwind of action! See more »


Passed | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


The earliest documented telecasts of this film took place in Cincinnati Monday 26 December 1949 on WKRC (Channel 11), and in Los Angeles Thursday 23 February 1950 on KNBH (Channel 4). See more »


Remade as One Man's Law (1940) See more »


Red River Valley
Played on guitar by Johnny Luther
Sung by Ken Maynard and Johnny Luther
See more »

User Reviews

Dreadful But Strangely Watchable
24 July 2013 | by Theo RobertsonSee all my reviews

I had a conversation with a fellow IMDb member where the name Ken Maynard cropped up , an actor I'd never heard of but was relatively popular back in the day . Checking his biog on this site makes interesting reading and is one of those rags to riches back to rags again mainly caused by an inbuilt self destruct button . As someone who doesn't like Westerns it's not too surprising I'd never heard of Maynard since his resume revolves around the genre

This film PHANTOM THUNDERBOLT is I'd hazard a guess somewhat typical of the actors output . One of these films that were popular at Saturday morning matinées that has its tongue planted firmly in its cheek . A man rides in to town warning the townsfolk that a stranger with a violent reputation is on his way and everyone had better board up their windows and doors if they know what's good for hem . Then the stranger rides in to town howling and firing his pistols and not only is he a misunderstood anti-hero he's someone who knows a fine dry cleaners in 19th Century frontier towns

After this scene which feels it belongs in a slightly more camp version of BLAZING SADDLES the film continues in the same vein . It's a comedy with very unsophisticated humour and scenes that are laughably unrealistic . On the surface it's rather dreadful stuff but for some reason remains watchable probably because it doesn't take itself seriously in any way . On the subject of Maynard he does have a likable on screen persona and perhaps he's a better actor than he's given credit for since it's difficult to see how he is anywhere as mean and nasty as his reputation suggests . Mind you Hollywood is the dream factory and all too often some dreams become nightmares

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Release Date:

5 March 1933 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Banditligans överman See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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