The railroads are squeezing farmers off their land. When a railroad agent kills their mother, Frank and Jesse James take up robbing banks and trains. The public regard them as heroes. When Jesse retires his erstwhile friend Robert Ford shoots him in the back to get the reward.Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
When Frank breaks Jesse out of jail, it's clear that the action is taking place at night. The note mentions 12 and the characters repeatedly say "tonight" "before this night is over", etc, but when Jesse and Frank emerge from the jail it is broad daylight. See more »
This had a great cast with big-name stars like Tyrone Power, Henry Fonda, Randolph Scott, Nancy Kelly, Henry Hull and Brian Donlevey and a bunch more lesser-but-known names with shorter roles. It also had Technicolor, one of the few movies made with it in 1939.
Now the bad news.......regrettably, I can't say much positive for the story. It portrayed the James boys in a totally positive light....and Hollywood has done that ever since. Why these criminals are always shown to be the "good guys" is beyond me. This film glamorizes them and made their enemies - the railroad people - into vicious human beings. The latter was exaggerated so much it was preposterous. Well, that's the film world for you: evil is good; good is bad.
Hey Hollywood: here's a news flash - The James boys were criminals! Really - look it up!
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