Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Overlooked Movies: Forbidden Trails (1941)

FORBIDDEN TRAILS is the third (of eight) B-Westerns in the Rough Riders series, starring Buck Jones, Tim McCoy, and Raymond Hatton as U.S. Marshals who often operate undercover. In this one, which also happens to be the final film directed by the prolific Robert N. Bradbury (father of B-Western star Bob Steele), Buck is targeted for revenge by two outlaws he sent to the pen (played by the ubiquitous and always entertaining Charles King and Bud Osborne). The bad guys' scheme nearly works, and as a result Buck is laid up for a while, but the other two Rough Riders pitch in to save the day and keep villainous Tristam Coffin from taking over the freight line run by stalwart young Dave O'Brien.

The script is kind of muddled, but the real appeal of these movies is watching all the old pros at work, playing off each other and appearing to have a genuinely good time. Buck's heroism, Tim's gravitas, and Sandy's comedy relief mesh well most of the time. And all three of the Rough Riders have great hats. I'm slowly working my way through this series and eventually will watch all of them. They may not be the Three Mesquiteers, but they'll do.

1 comment:

Glen Davis said...

The Rough Riders series is great.

After Buck's untimely death, Johnny Mack Brown took over the series.