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The Formal Drama
boblipton6 July 2006
In its time the American B western was possessed of a form as rigid as any dramatic form in existence. There would be half a dozen plots that could be used for a western and the story was usually told in a conservative fashion, using techniques that ran back to when William S. Hart, popularizer of the Good Bad Man in the movies, was one of the leading western stars. The conservatism was a combination of practicality and art: the Bs were the stomping grounds of silent A directors who wished to continue to work.... and the fact that the story took place in the outdoors meant that the outdoors formed a good part of the story.

In this one, Joel McCrea is the Good Bad Man -- a great trail boss whose men got out of control and wrecked a town. Now the town is struggling to make a comeback, and has hired McCrea to lead the drive -- and much of the town has come along on the drive The movie is beautifully shot and the plot has a revenge drama quality that makes it peculiarly interesting. Unhappily, most of the acting talent, once you get past McCrea, is less than first rate. Still, it does have its not inconsiderable charm and its easy assumption of what may seem like bizarre attitudes may give you the start of an understanding of the genre.
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A well made,thoughtful,low budget western.Mr McCrea splendid.
ianlouisiana14 December 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Mr Joel McCrea appeared in two of cinema's finest works at opposite ends of his career,"Sullivan's Travels" near the start and "Ride the high country" near the finish over 20 years later.In between,many of his roles were like that of John Cord in "Cattle Empire",a tarnished hero with a past.A trail boss wrongly convicted of allowing his men to wreck a town in a drunken orgy,Cord returns to Hamiltonville after being released from prison and is promptly arrested and dragged through the streets by horses ridden by irate townsfolk,only to be rescued by a former friend who was blinded in the incident that put Cord behind bars. Hired to take 5,000 head of cattle across unforgiving country to save the town from bankruptcy,Cord also agrees to take another herd in opposition to the original one,thus virtually guaranteeing to ruin Hamiltonville and gain his revenge. Directed by Charles M.Warren,also an experienced writer and producer, "Cattle Empire" is a bit of a journeyman's movie but is enlivened by Mr McCrea deciding to play the part of Cord as if he were John Wayne. As if that wasn't enough to peak our interest there are two brothers called George Washington Jeffery and Thomas Jefferson Jeffrey who run the chuckwagon and shave each other's beards,a pretty gal who dumped Cord when he went to prison and married the blinded man,and a villain racked with guilt who knows the truth about what happened in Hamiltonville five years earlier. The villain rides along at night singing "Streets of Laredo" in a shaky tenor as a tribute to an earlier Warren movie of that name that earned him a W.G.A. nomination in 1950. Ambitious neither in reach nor grasp,"Cattle Empire" is nevertheless a good example of the sadly long - defunct genre of the low - budget but thoughtful and well made western.And Mr McCrea is splendid in it.
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Cattle Empire and the Great Joel Mcrae
Hollycon115 July 2006
Cattle Empire has a strong story line and I won't give it away, but give this film a chance. If you like Westerns this is a film you must see! It is probably considered a "B" movie, but so many Western movies are(supposedly). If you look at this film through the eyes of a person in 2006, it may seem like you could have written the script yourself, but it's not that simple. There are subplots galore and Joel Mcrae is involved in them all, to some extent. There are women on this ride and that alone brings problems for the men on the cattle drive. Enjoy this film for the era it was made in and don't judge too harshly. This is an excellent Saturday afternoon rainy day film.If you like your Westerns any time watch it on a Sunny afternoon, you'll enjoy it just the same. We are true Western fans! Enjoy!
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Middling McCrea vehicle
rick_730 August 2007
This B-Western starts off brilliantly – despite unconvincing use of stock stuntwork – with 'murderer' Joel McCrea dragged through the streets by irate townspeople, then finally hauled, half-dead, onto the wagon of a man he once blinded. The script drops a few tantalising clues to the past, as McCrea encounters his old girl, his protégé and a mysterious local rancher... Then we're out on the trail and the low budget takes its toll, with a disappointing reliance on old footage. How many cows did the filmmakers actually have at their disposal? One? McCrea excelled in Westerns – I could watch them all day – but the plotting here is slack and the revelations far too contrived, leaving holes one could drive a herd through. Does McCrea intend to lead his old adversaries (and their cattle) to their doom? Will he steal the blind man's gal? And what really happened five years ago? You'll want to know, and then when you find out, you'll think: 'Is that it?' A strong action climax calls to mind 'Comanche Station', which is a far better film. Still, 'Cattle Empire' – for all its dead-ends and cattle shortages – remains a fascinating, idiosyncratic watch.

(2.5 out of 4)
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The Town Of Hamilton Bids You Welcome.
hitchcockthelegend28 March 2010
Joel McCrea stars as a trail boss falsely imprisoned for his men's misdemeanours. Released and suffering at the hands of an unforgiving and irate town, he's hired by a blind Don Haggerty to drive his herd - but Haggerty has his own agenda's on this trip.

A routine Western that is chiefly saved from the bottom rung by the presence of Joel McCrea. McCrea was a real life cowboy type who owned and worked out of a ranch in California, thus he gives this standard Oater a naturalistic core from which to tell the story. If only they could have given him some decent actors to work with, and, or, a bolder script, then this might have turned out better than it did.

Directed by Charles Marquis Warren (more famed for TV work like Gunsmoke and his writing than movie directing), the piece is scripted by Daniel B. Ullman, a prolific "B" western script specialist of the 1950s. This, however, is far from being a good effort from his pen. Shot in CinemaScope with colour by DeLuxe, it thankfully at least proves to be most pleasing on the eye. Brydon Baker proving to be yet another cinematographer seemingly inspired by the Alabama Hills, Lone Pine, locations.

Away from the turgid story there's a classical big Western shoot-out to enjoy, while a Mano-Mano shoot out set among the Alabama rocks towards the end is nicely handled. But the good technical aspects are bogged down by the roll call of by the numbers gruff cowboy characters, and worse still is a two-fold romantic strand that is so weak it beggars belief. All of which is acted in keeping with such an unimaginatively put together series of sub-plots masquerading as a revenge thriller. For McCrea this film is worth a watch - as it is for its beauty (the print is excellent), but in spite of the old fashioned appeal, and a couple of action high points, it remains borderline dull.

McCrea and the audience deserve far better. 5/10
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Gritty cattle-drive western
Marlburian25 July 2006
I'm not usually too keen on cattle-drive Westerns ("Red River" excepted), but this one isn't bad at all. It's not too formulaic, and the love interest is muted - all too often it gets in the way of a good plot, which in this case rolls along nicely. McCrea comes over as a real anti-hero for the first part of the film, and there's an ironic twist to the plot towards the end. McCrea is fine in a role that Randolph Scott would also have done well in.

My only quibble is the usual one I have when the hero gets dragged behind a horse - his clothes never come off too badly, though McCrea's shirt-sleeve does get ripped.
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Stick with this one...the script isn't as bad as you might first think.
MartinHafer30 January 2017
The film begins with a group of townsfolk dragging John Cord (Joel McCrea) from a rope tied to a man's horse. Yes, their plan is to drag him to death. Apparently five years earlier, Cord and his gang of cowboys entered the town and tore the place apart and spread a lot of misery. Inexplicably, he's back as one of the leading citizens in the town has hired him to take the town's cattle to market. How could this be?! After all, he was convicted of standing by and doing nothing to stop his men from an orgy of destruction. And, why is Cord so angry?! After all, the dragging seems more than justified when year hear about all the hellish things his men did to the town! And, why does Cord agree to take the job?! None of this makes any sense....and that's okay. Just keep watching!! It will make sense by the end.

This is a very good western...which isn't a surprise considering it stars Joel McCrea. Even the most ordinary of westerns were made better by his solid acting...and this is a decent film to boot. Well worth seeing...mostly because it is unique...and that's very rare with westerns.
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This stirring Western delivers drama , emotion , thrills , noisy action and lots of gutsy adventure
ma-cortes22 November 2019
Acceptable western with good cast dealing with the Blazing Story of the Ranch Kings Who Drove New Roads of Empire Across the Untamed West . Concerning some cowboys fighting in hopes a better life , being run by Joel McCrea as John Cord , a trail boss who attempts to stifle conflicts , but encounter problems instead . The film provides interesting and attractive roles and as the opening credits states : The characters and events depicted in this photoplay are fictional , any similarity to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental. It is a medium budget movie with thrills , fractic action, shootouts , stampedes as well as fine players , nice production design and pleasing results. It is still a run-of-the-mill entry in Western genre, in which Joel McCrea leading cattle hoping in achieving fortune . Actually shot in Arizona with adequate interpretations and solid sets . Released from prison and after spending 5 years for allowing his men to destroy a town in a drunken spree , a trail boss is contracted by the blind cattle baron Ralph Hamilton (Don Haggerty) to drive their cattle to Fort Clemson . Complicating issues , a rival cattle baron also hires the cattle driver to lead his herd . As John Cord - along with Ralph's wife Janice (Phyllis Coates) and his brother (Bing Russell) - driving cattle throughout risked ways , large plentiful rivers and perilous valley . The Wars of the Ranch Kings! When the West rocked with the thunder of the Big Cattle Drives that carved a nation out of the lawless wild! The war of the ranch kings stampedes the West's wildest cattle empire . Thundering herds battle for the winning of the West's wildest cattle empire!

Brawling , sprawling , almost primitive action in which our protagonist is forced to guide cattle across dangerous landscapes , teeming across the screen by means of cattle driving , attacks , gun-fire and ambushes . The picture contains whirlwinds of manic action , fights , sustained energy and often commendable results . Nice-looking but ordinary Twentieth Century Fox Western , including some novelties , but also with usual elements , such as drama , frenetic action, thrills , songs , crossfire , romance and some spectacular action scenes . Along with a love triangle in which implicates the marriage formed by Phyllis Coates/Don Haggerty and she is also in love for Joel McCrea , while a young girl , Gloria Talbott is for Joel McCrea , too . The plot is plain and simple , an evil, wealthy cattle owner wants to avoid the rival cattle arrives in Fort Clemson , as Joel McCrea tries to help a blind rancher and his wife save their cattle but they result to be chased and ambushed by the nasty competitor . A blending of functional main actors with great character players of whom Joel McCrea holds the best role as a brave cowboy leader with a sad past . A warm and thrilling storyline and thanks to personable drama , romance , Western action makes an enjoyable movie , a real pleasure to listen to as well as watch . This Western is a superior outing because it displays thrills , emotion , shoot'em up , cattle confrontation , riding pursuits and anything else . Interesing and moving screenplay by Eric Norden , Cahel Marquis Warren himself and Daniel B. Ullman based on his own story . The hothouse plot drives mercilessly forward with appropriate action , breathtaking shooting , thrills , impressive attacks , treason , rivalry , twists and turns . The tale is strong one and the yarn is wonderfully located against a colorful background from Arizona Natural Parks . Main starring , Joel McCrea , gives a good acting , as usual , as the ex-con serving a five year prison sentence who subsequently works as a trail boss being solicited by rival cattle barons to drive their respective cattle herds to Fort Clemson .He was a prolific actor in Western, his career is divided in movies directed by some great Western filmmakers . His wholesome good looks and quiet manner were soon in demand, primarily in romantic dramas and comedies, and he became an increasingly popular leading man. He hoped to concentrate on Westerns, but several years passed before he could convince the studio heads to cast him in one. When he proved successful in that genre, more and more Westerns came his way. But he continued to make a mark in other kinds of pictures, and proved himself particularly adept at the light comedy of Preston Sturges, for whom he made several films, especially the classy ¨Sullivan's travels¨ . By the late Forties, his concentration focused on Westerns, and he made few non-Westerns thereafter . As he played : Trooper Hook, The Oklahoman , The tall stranger , Rough Shoot , Wichita , Outriders , Colorado territory , Black Horse Canyon, Border River , Buffalo Bill , Virginian , South of St. Louis and many others . He was immensely popular in them, and most of them still hold up well today. Finally, his main testament, ¨Ride the high country¨ directed by Sam Peckinpah and along with Randolph Scott, whose career strongly resembles McCrea's, came out of retirement to make a classic of the genre . Support cast is pretty good with notorious secondaries as Don Haggerty , Gloria Talbott , Phyllis Coates , Bing Russell , Richard Shannon , Paul Brinegar , Charles Gray .

Atmospheric cinematography in a fading Technicolor by Brydon Baker , being necessary a perfect remastering . Shot on location in Alabama Hills, Lone Pine, California, Elfrida, Arizona, McNeal, Hereford, Double Adobe, Paul Spur, Pirtleville, Arizona . Evocative and thrilling musical score by Paul Sawtell who re-uses his theme music from The Cariboo Trail . Well produced by Robert Stabler, the motion picture was professionally directed by Charles Marquis Warren . Competently directed by Charles Marquis Warren who made a lot of low-budget movies , though he followed to work for Major productions , getting to make medium and big budget movies . Here filmmaker Charles Marquis Warren delivers a nice film , however he could be counted on to deliver solid "B" pictures which, at MGM , 2oth Century Fox and RKO , were often better than most other studios' "A" pictures . He directed in sure visual style and he made all kinds of genres, especially Westerns . As he wrote/produced and shot various Westerns , such as : Desert Hell, Blood Arrow , Tension at Table Rock, Day of the evil gun , Ride a Violent Mile , Copper Sky , Back from the Dead , Seven Angry Men , Arrowhead, Hellgate , Black whip , Little Big Horn and Charro starred by Elvis Presley.
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The town hated him, but needed him...
tmwest9 March 2014
Warning: Spoilers
Few guys can be considered as bad as McCrea at the beginning of this film. He blinded one man, made another lose his arm and was a disgrace to the town. Will he turn out to be good at the end? Talented writers like Daniel B. Ullman and Endre Bohem and a great actor like Joel McCrea., can makes us believe in whatever choice they make. McCrea was quite unsympathetic in Fort Massacre (1958), a western made in the same year. This film could go the same way, and part of the fun of seeing it is wandering how it will come out. In the fifties westerns were trying desperately to bring different stories due to the competition from TV. And when you saw a standard good guy like McCrea being so bad in the trailer, you would go running to the movie theater! Cattle Empire is directed by Charles Marquis Warren who has to his credit "Hellgate", "Seven Angry Men", "Tension at Table Rock", "Arrowhead" and "Little Big Horn", all remarkable westerns.
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Unexpectedly Bland
dougdoepke8 June 2016
Plot-- Trail-driver Cord (McCrea) is blamed for letting his cattle crew wreck a town. After prison, he consents to head up a trail drive that will save the same town's finances. But the town's in competition with an outside cattleman to be first to arrive at the buyer's base and get the contract. So who will win, and can Cord be trusted.

Despite the great Joel McCrea and a grabber opening, this is a bland western. The only action, until the showdown, is loping cattle going here and there and who knows where. The rambling script fails to gel into any kind of suspense, with one talky scene after another to accommodate the many characters and subplots. Meanwhile the large supporting cast flounders getting no help from director Warren. The one compensation —the scenic eastern Sierras— is marred by contrast with poorly designed nighttime sets that take us back to the studio. Considering this was a TCF production, I'm surprised it was so poorly put together. Maybe they were trying to capitalize on the McCrea name. But by this time, he was in his mid-50's, still quietly commanding, but aging, nonetheless. At least they don't have him riding into the sunset with one of the girls. Mostly he sits astride his horse and gives orders. As a fan of the ace cowboy, I wish there were more to compliment. But unfortunately, there isn't.
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Get Them Cattle Moving
damianphelps30 October 2020
This is an enjoyable western that hits the spot in all the right places.

The movie kicks of essentially in the middle of a bigger tale (you will understand what I mean) which works well as you try to understand the motivations of the key players in the film. As the movie roles along it does start to become more predictable which is a shame but still retains the viewers (mine) interest.

Solid piece of western movie making that adds to this excellent genre.
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Too much to swallow
bkoganbing23 July 2014
Cattle Empire opens with Joel McCrea being dragged through the streets of a small western town. He's a former trail boss who went to prison because he was held legally responsible for his crew shooting up a town and a lot of people getting permanently injured. That's a first in all the westerns I've ever watched and there've been a lot. But now the big cattle baron in the area, Don Haggerty who incidentally married McCrea's girl Phyllis Coates has need of his services. Haggerty has to get his herd to market and beat another baron's herd there or they win an army beef contract and Haggerty goes broke. Haggerty was also blinded in the fracas that put McCrea in prison.

So much nobility in one western I could hardly believe it. McCrea always on film epitomized the strong silent western hero maybe more than any other player. But it was just too much for me to swallow.

Steve Raines, Rocky Shahan, and Paul Brinegar wound up on the Rawhide series the following and all three have parts in Cattle Empire. Possibly they were cast after being seen here. In fact Eric Fleming was very much in the Joel McCrea mold as Gil Favor the trail boss, but he was not a candidate for sainthood as McCrea is here.
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Worth a watch, but not special
crood4 December 2020
Warning: Spoilers
Cattle Drive movies are a special kind of western. While drives figure into a lot of them, few are really ABOUT them. They tend to be a lot more about the characters, relationships, and struggle against the elements. Cattle Empire isn't the best by far. Red River, Lonesome Dove, and even episode of the miniseries Centennial, "The Longhorns" are better. However, there's plenty to see here.

Joel McCrae gives a good performance as John Cord, a man whose reputation has been tarnished and starts conflicted between a desire to get back at those who unjustly punished him and his true nature as an honest, dedicated trail boss. Don Haggerty as Ralph Hamilton is probably the only really other performance of note. A man blinded by Cord years previously, but is more than willing to give him a second chance. Ostensibly, it's because he's desperate to get his cattle to market first and he knows Cord is his best chance. However, it's clear all along he's harboring a secret.

The rest of the cast is mainly by the numbers. Most of the people working under Cord are so openly hostile, it's actually hard to sympathize with the damage Cord's men did to them and their town five years earlier. This includes Hamilton's younger brother Douglas. More fleshing out would have served them well and made the final revelation more satisfying as we don't care that they feel guilty.

The villain of the piece is fairly straightforwardly evil, but is clearly outmatched by Cord in all respects, so he never feels that threatening. Of course a cattle drive film doesn't really nee a villain and he would have served just as well as a competitor than an outright villain. It seems the cliched showdown is the only reason.

Watch for McCrae, an entertaining and underrated actor.
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Two Love Interests Reverse Plans on Revenge
dwighthunter4 March 2019
Warning: Spoilers
Two love interests - neither ride into the sunset with John Cord (McCrea).

At the end of the movie, John Cord leaves the cattle drive before the destination is reached to avoid first choice between romances, to avoid a partnership offer where he would run a ranch and commit adultery daily in front of a blind husband, Ralph Hamilton (Don Haggerty).

One love interest was too young and the director makes that clear in the close ups as one can see the withered face of John Cord in the same angle against a youthful face of Sandy Jeffrey (Gloria Talbot). This interest was only a one way interest - from Sandy to Cord.

The other love interest was two ways between Cord and Janice Hamilton (Phyllis Coates). Old flames are heated back up. Janice, in the night, visits Cord telling him she should not have come on the cattle drive as she has feelings. They lean close and the scene cuts away to next day. It doesn't take much imagination to get the details of what happened the night before when Janice tells Cord the next day you've been avoiding me - his guilt of what happened between them in the dark - followed by a question from Janice of when are we going to tell my husband.

When the blind man, Ralph Hamilton, offers Cord to co-run the ranch with his brother and that he has things he does not deserve, that he'll keep on going past the for, Cord knows then that the blind man knows.

Cord decides to leave the cattle drive a few days before the fort. The competition for cattle eliminated, the water found for cattle and people; the town of Hamiltonville saved, and the truth in what really happened in Hamiltoville 5 years ago that sent Cord to prison for no reason has set Cord free.

Instead of breaking up a marriage, perhaps seen as taking advantage of a blind man, and instead of crushing a young girls heart and dreams, Cord takes off early to avoid both situations. He tells the blind man that he'll tell him later where to send his pay. A man bent on revenge succumbs to doing the best - that's the moral here.
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Worth the look...
TheLittleSongbird6 February 2011
I wasn't blown away by Cattle Empire, however I do think it is worth the look. The production values are impressive, Joel McCrea is splendid, Gloria Talbott is a welcome presence and Charles Marquis Warren's direction is passable. Also the film starts brilliantly and the climax is pretty strong.

What didn't do it for me though was the film's length, it is far too short. The story felt rushed and underdeveloped and the script is decidedly patchy. Less of an issue is the pace, but it is still an issue, if the film had slowed down a little more the characters, story and script could have done with more credibility.

All in all, a decent film but nothing really to blow the mind. 6/10 Bethany Cox
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Make that 7.5
JohnHowardReid13 June 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Copyright 1958 by 20th Century-Fox Film Corp. New York opening: not recorded. U.S. release: 15 April 1958. U.K. release: May 1958. Australian release: 1 May 1958. 7,459 feet. 83 minutes.

SYNOPSIS: When John Cord, tough and hated cattle boss, returns to Hamilton after spending five years in prison for allowing his men to shoot up the town after a cattle drive, he is attacked by a mob. Later, local leaders approach him and ask him to drive their cattle to Fort Clemson. The drive is long and tough and only Cord has the kind of experience that can get the job done. He agrees and plans a double-cross.

NOTES: Claimed to be the 100th film in which Joel McCrea appears.

COMMENT: A good cast and promising plot, somewhat undermined by routine handling and lack of development. All the same, it looks grand enough in 'Scope to more than carry the entertainment day. Mr. McCrea is his usual rugged self (though it's hard to believe that any judge and jury would be so collectively lacking in character insight as to convict him). Miss Talbott makes not only a mighty fetching heroine, but according to the studio Press Sheet, "she did all her own stunts. She owns a riding stable near Glendale, California, which keeps her fit for such acrobatics. This is her 2nd appearance opposite McCrea, her first being The Oklahoman." Also in the cast, serial queen Phyllis Coates ("Jungle Drums of Africa", "Panther Girl of the Kongo").
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Race between two cattle herds to be first to market
weezeralfalfa14 April 2017
Warning: Spoilers
This low budget color western stars Joel McCrea as John Cord, recently released from 5 years in prison, and being dragged behind a horse down the main street. He's badly skinned up when the Hamiltons arrive from their ranch, and cart him off to recuperate. Ralph Hamilton, a cattle baron, is friendly toward Cord, even though he is blamed for being responsible for Hamilton being blind, when Cord's wranglers tore up the town after a cattle drive. Hamilton knows Cord is the best trail boss around and wants him to lead a drive to market at an Army post. He wants it done soon, in the dry season, and to get there ahead of a rival herd, owned by Garth. After hesitation, Cord takes the job, hiring some of the very men who dragged him behind a horse. There are several key relationships I don't understand or find fault with. The most important is the relationship between Cord and Garth. I don't understand why Cord signed on as Garth's trail boss, then went over and signed up as Hamilton's trail boss, during approximately the same time and route? He never seems to function as Garth's trail boss, but sneaks over to his camp on several nights to do some jawing. Garth's herd is several days ahead of Hamilton's. Cord suggests that Garth go via Horse thief Creek, rather than Dismal River, because the latter is more likely to be dry. Garth agrees in Cord's presence, but after he leaves, says Cord probably told them things backwards, so his herd goes via the much shorter Dismal River. Unfortunately, it lives up to its name, and is bone dry. In consequence, all Garth's cattle die of dehydration. In contrast, Cord takes Hamilton's herd via Horse thief Creek, which is well watered. Several of Cord's men previously had quit, not believing the herd would make it. One meets Garth at the destination, and he says he will hire gunslingers to steal Hamilton's herd.(Never mind that they are presumably branded with Hamilton's brand, and his own cattle probably would have gotten there first if he had taken the route recommended by Cord). This man reports back to Cord about Garth's intention. Cord takes some of the men and rides to hopefully meet Garth's bunch. They set up an ambush, which is successful(The riders fall off their horses in a convenient but amateurish way, and their horses are never hit.) Garth runs over to some rocks and Cord follows. Guess what happens.

Cord's relationships with the 2 young ladies: Sandy and Janice, are awkward. Janice and Cord clearly were very close prior to Cord's imprisonment. Soon thereafter, she married Ralph Hamilton, even though he was blind. Perhaps she took pity on him, or perhaps she hoped to live comfortably with his ranch set up and his brother's help. Now that Cord is free and working for Hamilton, their old flame burns brightly at times. My expectation was that Ralph would die somehow, opening up the possibility of a Cord-Janice marriage. I think the fact that Ralph was still alive when the drive was over was the main reason why Cord turned down an offer of partnership, and decided to ride into the sunset. He didn't want Janise's continued presence to act as temptation.

As for Cord's relationship with Sandy, she seems to be characterized as a late teen, in contrast to the older Janice. Through most of the film, she refers to Cord as "Uncle John". I don't know if he was her real uncle, or merely functioned as such at one time. In any case, Cord clearly was at least 2X her age, which is not unheard of. But, Cord used this as an excuse to brush off her romantic overtures. He claims she has a lot to learn before he might accept her as his wife. He also claims he will probably be back some day to claim her. Don't count on it, Sandy.

This screenplay is unusual in that usually the cattle baron is one of the bad guys, lording it over the small ranchers. Available at You Tube at present.
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Cattle Drive
dukeakasmudge20 August 2016
Warning: Spoilers
***Spoilers Ahead, Maybe*** I mainly watched this movie because I was flipping through the movie channels looking for something to watch & I was lucky enough to catch it right when it started.The only time anything really happens in Cattle Drive is when what really happened when John Cord & his men shot up the town is revealed & the foiled ambush/shootout at the end.Those were the most exciting things to happen in the movie.Oh yeah, and when John Cord is dragged through town at the beginning.Nothing really happens in Cattle Drive except a...... cattle drive.Cattle Drive was boring at times but it's not a bad enough movie that I'd turn it off before it ended.It's definitely not a movie I'd recommend somebody go see even if you're a Western fan like I am.There are better Westerns or even better movies out there you could be watching
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gleetroy-848-5248442 October 2020
Joel MCRae acts (if you could call it that) Not as if he is walking through his part. That would take too much effort on his part. He is sleeping through the film, literally! Underplaying is one thing-no playing is another. Boring to the hilt!
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Waste of Time
gary1792-116 February 2016
There are plenty of good B westerns out there. This isn't one of them. To be brutally honest, this movie plays like it was written by 10-year-olds. Even the great Joel McCrae can't save it. I noticed that one other reviewer complained that the film was too short. I disagree. I think it was too long. In addition to the weak plot and some truly awful dialogue, the supporting cast is none too good either.

The story concerns a man just out of prison, having been wrongly accused of letting his trail crew shoot up a town. He returns to the same town at the request of its leading citizen (who was blinded in the ruckus created by the trail crew, no less) in order to head up a cattle drive which is supposed to save the town. I'm not sure I've ever encountered such a lame premise for a dramatic film. Maybe a comedy, but that's not what "Cattle Empire" purports to be.

All in all, I'm sorry I sat through the whole thing, but I guess I just expected it to get better. It didn't.
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A Western Worth a Watch but it's Plot Heavy and Rather Unexciting
LeonLouisRicci17 June 2015
Widescreen, Color, Outdoor Western with Joel Mccrea Leading a Huge Herd of Cattle and a Bunch of Weak Actors on a Drive that We are Told Only He Could Make Happen. There is a Good Deal of Odd Hero Worship Combined with Loathing in the Overbaked Script.

The Look of the Movie is Better than Average but its Short Running Time is Not Enough to Allow the Heavily Plotted Script to Become Believable or Very Exciting for That Matter. It All Ends Up Being a Rather Talky Tepid Affair.

Alliances and Attitudes Turn Abruptly and the Action is Minimal. Not a Bad Movie but Not One of Joel Mccrea's Best. Gloria Talbott as a Now Grown Up "Niece" is Striking with Her Oddly Shaped Facial Features and a Shapely Body, but Doesn't Have Much To Do.

Overall, Worth a Watch but it Doesn't Manage to Rise Above Average Despite Joel Mccrea, a Widescreen Template, Color, a Heavy Plot, and the Always Attractive Gloria Talbot.
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