- X 2019
The New Frontier
Paul Malvern, Trem Carr (executive) for Republic
directed by Carl Pierson
starring John Wayne, Muriel Evans, Warner Richmond, Al Bridge, Sam Flint, Murdock MacQuarrie, Allan Cavan, Mary MacLaren, Theodore Lorch, Glenn Strange, Philip Kieffer, Frank Ball, Jack Montgomery, Earl Dwire, John Ince, Perry Murdock, Fred Parker, Cactus Mack, Eddie Parker, Chuck Baldra, Herman Hack, Jack Kirk, Tex Palmer
written by Robert Emmett Tansey
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The Old West: John (John Wayne) is a trail guide at heart, but when his
father (Sam Flint), a retired trail guide, is gunned down in a saloon in
the lawless town of Frontier, John sees himself forced to become the
town's first sheriff and try to run saloon owner Ace (Warner Richmond) out
of town ... easier said than done, because Ace has got a pretty tight
organisation that also includes Norton's (Glenn Strange) gang of outlaws
at his disposal, as he's not just a gambler and saloon owner but wants to
take over the entire city, too. First he wants to lure John into a death
trap, then he almost kills him in his saloon - but Kit (Al Bridge), an
outlaw with a code of honour, and his gang save John ... and ultimately he
even deputizes them and they take care of Ace and gang, even if it means
burning down most of the city.
Muriel Evans plays John's love interest,
but she has little to do.
New Frontier is a very
good-looking B Western, as it features very slick camerawork, some of the
best character actors to support John Wayne, and a story that's not too
epic for its budget while the most is squeezed out of each Dollar anyhow.
That said, the story isn't exactly original and lacks twists and turns,
but is well enough paced to entertain anyhow. One thing though, several
scenes are rather obviously lifted from another movie - according to my
information the 1927 silent feature The Red Raiders -, scenes that
include the city burning that don't always make total sense ... and yet
are among the most impressive of the film.
In all, maybe not perfect,
but nice B-entertainment.