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A old movie filmed in the old movie style

  • Mar 23, 2011
Rating:
+3
This is a typical 1939 black and white western where people get shot and fall dead with no puncture wound or blood shown. A black woman appears as a maid and speaks and acts in the typical 1939 stereotypical demeaning silly manner. James Stewart got second billing after Marlene Dietrich. The hour and a half film is filled with more humor than violence. Dietrich sings three songs with her German accent, but since this is 1939, and Germany is about to become an American enemy, she is repeatedly called Frenchy, to mislead us, as if we could be fooled.

The action takes place in the town of Bottleneck, which is controlled by a saloon owner and his cohorts, including the town mayor. The saloon owner cheats a rancher at cards when Dietrich helps him by switching one of the rancher's cards. The rancher loses his ranch and cattle as a result of his bet. He figures out what happened and gets a rifle to confront the owner, but the sheriff intercepts him and promises to save his ranch. However the saloon owner kills the sheriff and the mayor appoints the town drunk as his replacement. The new sheriff sobers up and tells everyone that he is bringing the son of the fabled now dead Sheriff Destry to town to serve as his deputy. He will clean up the town, and Destry will ride again.

Destry (James Stewart) seems like a dandy. He says he doesn't want to use a gun because people can get hurt; this is exactly what happened to his father who was shot in the back because people were afraid to face him and his gun. Viewers will enjoy seeing how Destry cleans up the town, how he resolves various conflicts using his wits, and helps the defrauded rancher. Viewers will find themselves, like Marlene Dietrich, charmed by the homey manner of the new deputy. They will also enjoy watching to see whether Destry gives up his non-violent approach to crime when the saloon owner kills his friend the sheriff, because, you see, despite his protestations, Destry can shoot.
A old movie filmed in the old movie style A old movie filmed in the old movie style

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About the reviewer
Israel Drazin ()
Ranked #4
Dr. Israel Drazin is the author of twenty books, including a series of five volumes on the Aramaic translation of the Hebrew Bible, which he co-authors with Dr. Stanley M. Wagner, and a series of four … more
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Details

Genre: Western
Release Date: January 1, 1932
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Screen Writer: Robert Keith
Runtime: 53min
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