Around the film hang fascinating questions about border politics, which I’ll touch on in an introduction before the screening. One of Eugene Buck’s motivations for making the film may have been his rough cross-examination during his kidnappers’ first trials, in October 1913, when defense attorneys cast him as a confused and unreliable witness against idealistic freedom fighters. On film he could reproduce the pursuit, the shootouts, his kidnapping, and his friend’s murder just as he had testified. Reenacting the crime on film may have been the best revenge—and a way to honor the sacrifice of Deputy Ortiz, a twenty-year police veteran and, for the era, a rare Mexican American lawman.
With a fondness for gambling, Jim Saunders is given to neglecting his wife and child. One night during his absence at the saloon, Miguel Gomez, a Mexican outlaw, for whom $1,000 reward is offered, enters Jim's home and demands food of Mrs. Saunders.
A fast-paced, enjoyable entry in the long-running Three Mesqueteers Western series, Heroes of the Saddle featured the three cowboy pals promising to look after Peggy Bell (Patsy Lee Parsons), the little daughter of mortally wounded rodeo champ Montana (Kermit Maynard). Legal technicalities, however, halt the adoption proceeding and Stony (Robert Livingston), Rusty (Raymond Hatton), and Rico (Duncan Renaldo) can only watch as the little girl is placed in the county orphanage.
Texas Ranger Johnny (Johnny Mack Brown), poses as a hired gunman called The Dog Town Kid in order to infiltrate the outlaw gang, to uncover a plot by a crooked lawman, Sheriff Bradley (Horace Murphy), and a large landholder, Jim Morgan (Lloyd Ingraham) against the smaller ranches and the homesteaders.
With the railroad coming, Nixon is after the ranchers land. Using a stooge land agent, his method is to claim the person they bought their ranches from never had title to the land and their deeds are worthless. Fereral Agent Johnny Mack arrives posing as a gunman. He is quickly onto the henchman and Land Agent and eventually suspects Nixon is the big boss. But he needs the help of ventriloquist Alibi to bring them in.
Three outlaws fleeing a posse through the desert come upon a dying woman and her baby in a wagon. Before she passes away, she makes the men promise to take care of her baby and get it safely through the desert.
The Durango Kid rides again in Columbia's Landrush. As ever, the masked do-gooder, alias Steve Harmon, is played by Charles Starrett. Bringing up the rear in every sense of the word is Harmon's comical sidekick Smiley Burnette. In this outing, Harmon dons his Durango garb to rescue a group of homesteaders from scurrilous villains. Musical relief is provided by Ozie Waters and his Colorado Rangers.
It's WW II and German Reuther has organized local gangs to sabotage the beef supply at the source. Marshal Lee Clark arrives to investigate and joins up with local cowboys Art Davis and Bill Boyd. Lee has a typewritten note from the gang and hopes it can be traced to it's source.
Serials usually spawned feature film versions, but with this film, it was the other way around. A 1932 Buck Jones Western, White Eagle was made into a serial nine years later, again starring Jones in the title role, a (supposedly) Native American Pony Express Rider defending his people against a gang of evil Whites.
A mysterious old puppeteer drifts into town and falls victim to a heart attack. Unbeknownst to the town sheriff, he leaves behind a mischievous little man only known as Mr. Stitches. The sheriff soon finds he has no other option but to call in "Leslie Rhinestone," a retired carnival sharp shooter with a shady past that includes the puzzling Mr. Stitches!
A western in which Calamity Jane's (Evelyn Ankers) rightful ownership of a gambling hall is challenged. She nearly loses the business to a shady crook, but Texas lawyer Ellison puts up a legal battle to help her stay in charge. After a sensational fight, the letters proving her right are discovered.
Following completion of the "Trail Blazers" series, Bob Steele and Hoot Gibson were paired in three other Monogram westerns, with the only connection to the "Trail Blazers" series being Steele and Gibson in the cast and production and distribution by Monogram, with various Monogram people serving as production supervisors i.e., William Strobach on this entry and Victor Hammond on the other two. This one finds Jack Slade (Mauritz Hugo) and Mary Conway,alias Blanche (Veda Ann Borg), being recognized as known and wanted crooks by deputy marshal Harry Stevens (Steve Clark) and, when he orders them out of town, Slade kills him. His son, Bob Stevens (Bob Steele) and friend Parkford (Hoot Gibson) become U.S. Marshals and proceed to rid the town of the cut-throat gang that has been terrorizing the citizens. Bob goes undercover as an outlaw and works his way into the gang, while Hoot poses as a Dude who goes about making fiery speeches on behalf of law and order.
Dusty Gardner, and other Texas ranchers, are driving a herd of cattle to Abilene, Kansas along the Chisholm Trail. Desperate need of water takes them to the Turner ranch, where Belle Turner demands exorbitant prices for the water. Dusty learns that Belle is also trying to oust Mary Lee and Montana Smith from the trading post Mary operates. The sheriff sides with Belle following a fight between the two women. Belle knows there is artesian springs under the land the trading post occupies and intends to get the property by any means.