Friday, April 23, 2010

Dodge City (1939)

Dodge City
Dodge City Photos
Another classic film from that golden year in cinema of 1939. This rousing western stars Errol Flynn as ex-soldier, now cattle driver Wade Hatton. Yes, I said Errol Flynn..he of the swashbuckling films like Robin Hood, Captain Blood, and The Sea Hawk. And before you can say it won't work, Flynn is awesome from the get go. He is perfectly at home in a western with a six gun as he would be in Sherwood Forest flinging arrows. The story has him delivering some cattle to the wild and dangerous town of Dodge City. Along the way he also guides a wagon train through the treacherous countryside. That's where he meets Abbie Irving (played by the lovely De Havilland) and her troublesome brother. Well when her drunk brother causes a stampede and shoots at Wade, Wade shoots back and injures the kid. After that unfortunate incident Abbie has no use for wade. Finally when the wagon train arrives in Dodge City, Wade encounters the local bad guy..Jeff Surrett (played to the evil hilt by Bruce Cabot) who has a habit of killing men who he buys cattle off of and keeping the money for himself. Well Wade reluctantly agrees to become town sheriff after he sees a tragic accident and becomes Surrett's worst enemy. Eventually Abbie comes around and starts liking him too. Dodge City is a super western, staged with impressive action scenes including a wild saloon bar fight that leaves the place in shambles. The color is extraordinary and the music score is heavenly. Errol Flynn is perfectly cast as Wade as he shows that he won't take any guff from anyone. Olivia is just amazing. Every time I hear her voice, I fall in love with her. She has the most wonderful accent you will ever hear. Also Ann Sheridan, the Oommph Girl is on hand as a saloon singer who gets to belt out a couple of energetic numbers. Plus the banter between Errol and Olivia only solidifies why they were one of the best on screen couples ever. Dodge City is one of the best westerns ever to come out of Old Hollywood and I highly recommend it.
Wade Hatton: You know, out here the trail boss has sometimes even got to take the law into his own hands.
Abbie Irving: Oh, yes, pioneering I believe you call it, don't you?
Dodge City
Dodge City Photos


Dawn said...

Monty, This sounds like a wonderful movie. I think everything Errol Flynn performs in is great. He is such a wonderful actor. This movie sounds like a good combination of action, drama, romance and comedy. And from the pictures you posted the very young Olivia de Havilland, looks very pretty. I would like to learn more about Ann Sheridan and her movies.

monty said...

Check out my blog postings last month on Ann Sheridan, Dawn to find out my personal take on her. She is in my top 5 favorite actresses of all time.

Paul 2 said...

Dawn and Monty,Dodge City is a classic. It boasts the best bar fight ever shot. So Good that parts of it was recycled in more than one Warner's western. Monty is right about the score, another of Max Steiner's great scores. Just think Max did 6 scores in 1939. Dodge City, Dark Victory, Gone With The Wind, The Old Maid, Confessions of a Nazi Spy, among them.