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 <email@example.com>
Red River Valley
Played on guitar by Johnny Luther
Sung by Ken Maynard and Johnny Luther See more »
Dreadful But Strangely Watchable
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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