Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Overlooked Movies: Law of the Pampas

My friend Robert Skinner told me about this movie and said it was on YouTube.  I have a smart TV with the YouTube app, but I've never tried it.  I thought it was about time I did, so I gave it a try.  It took me a few minutes to figure things out, but I managed to get the app to work.  Then I watched Law of the Pampas, and it was a lot of fun.  

And what a cast!  There was Sidney Toler, Charlie Chan himself, impersonating an comic Argentinian, and Glenn Strange, who went on to play Frankenstein a few times.  Strange was all over TV in the '50s, too.  Even Eddie Dean had a bit part.  He went on to be a pretty big singing cowboy star in the '40s.  And Sidney Blackmer, who sure had a great career.  I don't know who played the kid, Ernesto, but he was more annoying than anything.  He was probably inserted to appeal to the crowd that would fill the theater for this 1939 feature.

The plot's fairly simple, also a nod to the intended audience.  Hoppy and his sidekick, Lucky (Russell Hayden, in this instance), go to Argentina with a herd of cattle shipped there by the Bar 20.  Hoppy's going along because he has grasped in an instant that the accidental deaths of the wife and son of the ranch owner weren't accidental at all.  And he already knows who done it.  These B-westerns didn't deal in subtlety.

There's plenty of ridin' and shootin' and fightin'.  There's even an explosion.  William Boyd is excellent as Hoppy, as usual, and the movie seemed to be to of a little higher quality than most B-westerns, with some attention to the details of the Argentinian ranch and gauchos, even though Argentina looks a lot like California.  All in all, an entertaining way to spend 80 minutes or so.


George said...

I haven't tried all the new features on our new SONY 4K HDTV either. But watching a western on YouTube sounds like a worthy enterprise!

Jeff Meyerson said...

I'll have to check that YouTube app out! (Jackie says we have it.)

As a kid I really liked Hoppy, though Roy Rogers was my favorite. I had a Roy lunch box and thermos. I wish I still had it.

I miss the old days.

Jeff Meyerson said...

I think it was this one.

Jeff Meyerson said...

That's nuts. I've seen them on eBay for $15.99 to over $300!

Unknown said...

This is why you should never throw anything away.

Dan said...

A solid entry in a series that was mostly above average. MY own favorites include STAGECOACH WAR (singing outlaws) RENEGADE TRAIL and BAR 20 RIDES AGAIN.