Friday, November 15, 2019

Week of November 16-22, 2019

To answer these trivia questions, please email me at

Brain Teasers:

Which American actor worked with directors Tonino Valerii, Steven Spielberg, Lucio Fulci and Tobe Hooper?
George Grimes knew that it was Geoffrey Lewis of IL MIO NOME E NESSUNO, The Name of the Game "LA 2017", SELLA D'ARGENTO and Salem's Lot.

Which American Western features two American actors who made Italian Westerns and has an all female jury convict the bad guy of murder?
Llewellyn H. and Rick Garibaldi knew that it is RAILS INTO LARAMIE featuring Dan Duryea and Lee Van Cleef.

Charles Gilbert asks, "In which Mario Caiano gladiator flick does tavern owner Peter White offer to fix boiled turnips and stuffed turnips stuffed with more turnips?"
No one has answered this question yet.

By what name is Montgomery Ford better known?
Llewellyn H., Charles Gilbert and George Grimes know that it is Brett Halsey.

Which Italian actor was born in Forence July 12, 1906?
George Grimes knew it was Piero Tordi.

And now for some new brain teasers:

Which actor from THE GOOD THE BAD AND THE UGLY also appeared in a movie with Anthony Newley and James Booth?
Which actor who made Westerns in Spain was once billed as "MGM's new Latin star sensation"?
Which movie featuring Gordon  Mitchell is a sequel to a Romanian film?

Name the movies from which these images came.

George Grimes identified last week's photo of Fernando Sancho in DOC MANOS DE PLATA, aka DOC HANDS OF STEEL, aka L'UOMO DALLA PISTOLA D'ORO, aka THE MAN WHO CAME TO KILL.
Above is a new photo.
Can you name from what movie it came?

No one has identified the above photo.
Can you name from what movie it came?

George Grimes identified last week's photo of George Chakiris and Claudia Cardinale in LA RAGAZZA DI BUBE.
Above is a new photo.
Can you name from what movie it came?

George Grimes identified last week's frame grab of  Sammo Hung in THREE KINGDOMS, aka THREE KINGDOMS: RESURRECTION OF THE DRAGON.
Above is a new photo.
Can you name from what movie it came?

I am interested in knowing what movies you have watched and what you enjoyed or not. So please send me an email at if you'd like to share. Here's what I watched last week:


Tombstone Territory "Johnny Ringo's Last Ride" (1958) - Sam Peckinpah wrote this half hour drama which was directed by Ted Post. 

Tales of Wells Fargo "Apache Gold" (1957) - Sam Peckinpah wrote this half hour drama which was directed by Earl Bellamy.

Mildly enjoyed:

Uncnsrd "Faith Evans" (2019)


Inside the Actors Studio "Alfre Woodard" (2019)

Did not enjoy:

THE SON OF DR. JEKYLL (1951) - I am amazed that setting an house ablaze on a crowded London street doesn't alarm the fire brigade or the neighbors. 

JAZZ BOAT (1960) - This is evidence that, at one time, Ted Heath and his Music was considered popular enough for future James Bond producer Albert R. Broccoli to feature him in a movie. Future James Bond cinematographer Ted Moore was the D.P. and Nick Roeg was the operator. If you ever wanted to see Lionel Jeffries beat up James Booth, this is the movie for you.

THE BANANA SPLITS MOVIE (2019) - I had never heard of this TV show until I heard The Dickies version of the theme song. I tried to watch an episode on YouTube, but didn't enjoy it. So, someone had the bright idea of making an Horror movie. Here the "Splits" aren't men in costumes, but robots that go haywire and start killing people.

ATTRITION (2018) - For a movie starring Steven Seagal, this flick ain't terrible. Director Mathieu Weschler brings a certain stylish pictoral quality to this shot in Thailand production, and some of the action is enjoyably bloody. The screenplay written by Seagal features a number of wince-inducing speeches, and seems a bit RAMBO inspired - except this hero assembles his old combat team and doesn't go into battle alone. 

NORA PRENTISS (1947) - Man fakes his own death because he can't bring himself to tell his wife he's running off with a night club singer. Later he is convicted of killing himself and sentenced to death.

CHRISTMAS AT THE CHATEAU (2019) - Like a Hopalong Cassidy Western, evil bankers want our heroine's property. Unlike an Hoppy movie, there is no gunfire, fist fights or car chases. 

Highway Patrol "Motel Robbery" (1956)

FALSE COLORS (1943) - Jimmy Rogers joins the Hopalong Cassidy team for the next six adventures. The film opens with Glenn Strange, as Sonora, racing across the land. At a distance, he sees Bud Lawton, played by Tom Seidel, working as a cowboy with the Bar 20 herd led by Hoppy, California and Jimmy. Joining with Lefty, played by Pierce Lyden, Sonora tries to bushwack Bud, but the arrival of our heroic trio saves Bud. In town, the herd is loaded onto a train, and a letter catches up with Bud telling him of the death of his father. Bud is going to inherit The Diamond Hitch ranch, but to be on the safe side, he quickly seeks a lawyer, played by Earle Hodgins, to draw up a partnership agreement making the heroic trio his heirs. Coming out of the lawyer's office, Bud is caught by Sonora and Lefty and murdered. As Bud dies, the soundtrack plays Chopin's prelude 28 - which I am used to hearing with Serge Gainsbourg's lyrics for "Jane B." In the town of Pancho, Mark Foster, played by Douglass Dumbrille, is the villain, hoping to get The Diamond Hitch and the water rights that come with it. He's got a look-a-like to pass as Bud, which astonishes our heroes, who decide to play along in order to investigate. Meeting with Bud's sister, Faith, played by Claudia Drake, the fake Bud tries to pressure her to sell. As Hoppy explains the scam to Judge Stevens, played by Sam Flint, California gets into a bar fight with one of Foster's men, Rip Austin, played by Bob Mitchum. Hoppy arrives to save California, and Hoppy and Austin have a rip-roaring duke fest. That night, a party is held to celebrate the return of Bud Lawton, at which time the fake Bud annouces that he's going to sell the ranch. Hoppy shows the partnership agreement, which Foster counters by having the corrupt Sheriff Clem, played by Roy Barcroft, lock-up our heroes. Foster and Clem decide to let our heroes out of jail and then shoot them for escaping. Hoppy turns the tables and has Clem, Sonora and Lefty locked up. Seeing the fake Bud going into Foster's office, Hoppy figures out the entire scheme. Foster and Austin wound the fake Bud, who finally confesses his part and unmasks Foster's villainy. Hoppy and Foster have another rip-roaring duke fest. It seems to have become official - Hoppy doesn't kill bad guys anymore. In this film, only a good guy gets killed, and our heroes arrest the bad guys. The film also has two endings. At first Hoppy and California ride away leaving Jimmy to be the foreman for Faith. As Hoppy and California have ridden a bit, Jimmy  rides up and joins them to return to the Bar 20. It looks like the producers weren't certain if they wanted him to continue with the series so they shot it both ways. George Archainbaud directed.

RIDERS OF THE DEADLINE (1943) - Kind of a remake of 1941's DESERT BANDIT, also written by Bennett Cohen, this film has our heroes as Texas Rangers. Cohen also wrote FALSE COLORS, which has our heroes as Bar 20 cowboys. I guess no one expected continuity from film to film. The inhabitants of a cantina get excited when our heroes approach, but Gunner Madigan, played by Anthony Warde, gets them all to calm down, including Nick Drago, played by Bob Mitchum. Hoppy comes to get Tim Mason, played by Richard Crane, who has lost again at Madigan's card game. Tim's sister, Sue, played by Frances Woodward, is worried about her brother, but is excited when Hoppy informs everyone that Tim's been accepted as a Texas Ranger. Unfortunately, Tim got a loan from banker Simon Crandall, played by William Halligan, who is in cahoots with Madigan. Madigan takes over the loan and tries to force Tim to turn a blind eye to a gun smuggling operation through Tim's ranch over the Mexican border. At first Tim plays along, but when Drago arrives with the wagons, Tim decides not to play along. Drago clobbers Tim unconcious, but Hoppy and other rangers arrive to stop the smuggling effort. The wagon driver makes a dying remark about being told that Tim was paid off, so Captain Jennings, played by Herbert Rawlinson, has Tim arrested. Deputy Sheriff Martin, played by Hugh Prosser, murders Tim and accuses Hoppy of being part of an escape attempt. Hoppy is fired from the Rangers and goes to Madigan for a new line of work. Drago tries to get Hoppy caught by the Rangers, so Hoppy and Drago have a rip-roaring duke fest. Crandall convinces Sue to allow his men to use a barn on the ranch, but her cook, Sourdough - played by Earle Hodgins, notices something peculiar. Sourdough and Sue find the illicit boxs of guns and are taken prisoner by the bad guys. Hoppy frees Sue and sends her to get the Rangers. The smugglers and the Rangers battle. Martin dies when the wagon he's driving crashes. Crandall kills Madigan, California kills Drago and Hoppy arrests Crandall. Lesley Selander directed.

TEXAS MASQUERADE (1944) - At the Bar 20 in Arizona, Hoppy, California and Jimmy wonder why Sam Nolan, played by Francis McDonald, isn't where he is supposed to be. Rolling boulders down a hill, Nolan stops a stagecoach, shoots the driver, and is robbing lawyer James Corwin, played by Nelson Leigh, when Corwin fights back. Our heroic trio arrive, captures Nolan and sees to Corwin's injuries. Not too long after that, Hoppy assumes Corwin's identity - and his city duds, to go undercover in Glenby, Texas, where night riders are forcing land owners to sell their property to J.K. Trimble, played by Russell Simpson. Trimble uses brutes hired by practical joker/bar owner Ace Maxson, played by Don Costello, who uses a six gun to make Hoppy dance when he shows up at the saloon to order milk. Corwin is half owner of the Lazy W ranch and cousin to Virginia Curtis, played by Mady Correll, with whom California and Jimmy have gotten employment. "Satan's Garden" soon becomes a focal point of the investigation into the night riders, which is a problem as Joshua Trees don't grow in Texas. Crooked Marshal Rowbottom, played by Robert McKenzie, tries to throw John Martindale, played by J. Farrell MacDonald, and his wife Emma, played by June Pickerell, off their property, which leads to the death of Deputy Lou Sykes, played by Bill Hunter. When Maxson arrives with a mob to hang Martindale, Hoppy presents himself as a lawyer and makes Maxson dance with his six gun. Eventually, Hoppy amasses evidence against Trimble just as Nolan arrives to inform the bad guys of Hoppy's masquerade. When Nolan corners Hoppy to murder our hero, Hoppy shows that he can still kill bad guys. The film climaxes with a shootout at "Satan's Garden", but Trimble dies when he steps into an oil pit that acts like quicksand. George Archainbuad directed.

LUMBERJACK (1944) - Pretty much a remake of 1941's RIDERS OF THE TIMBERLINE, LUMBERJACK starts with our heroic trio scrambling to react to a woman's screams. Aunt Abbey Peters, played by Ethel Wales, reacts vocally to a note left by Julie Peters, played by Ellen Hall, saying that she's off to marry Ben Jordan, played by John Whitney. Fearing how Bar 20 boss Buck Peters, played by Herbert Rawlinson, might react to the news, Hoppy, California and Jimmy ride off to the three different locations where a wedding might happen. Hoppy is correct in his guess, but the marriage has been made. While Hoppy talks with Julie, Ben goes outside and shots ring out. Hoppy and Julie exit the building to find both Ben and Buck shot. Hoppy sees two men riding away and gives chase. Taggart, played by Hal Taliaferro, gets away, but Hoppy catches up with Slade, played by Henry Wills, and gets back Ben's briefcase before having to shoot the bad guy dead. Hoppy finds a notice that Ben will lose his lumber land unless he pays his back taxes, so our heroic trio accompany Julie and Aunt Abbey into the High Sierras to save the property rights. It turns out that Daniel J. Keefer, played by Douglass Dumbrille, and Clyde Fenwick, played by Francis McDonald, want the lumber land in order to make a contract with the rail road. In order to fulfill their plot, the villains also need to evict the lumber workers who are squatting on the land. Julie arrives to claim her rights as Ben's widow, but then gets stupid - rejecting Hoppy's advice and believing the crap Keefer and Fenwick are dishing out. Eventually, she sees reason, so the villains decide to blow up the dam. For the climax, which seems to be building towards a big shootout but turns into a big fist-fest, Buck Peters and the Bar 20 boys ride in to turn the tide. Lesley Selander directed. While Buck Peters is frequently mentioned in various films, the last time he was shown was in 1938's THE FRONTIERSMEN, and he was played by William Duncan.

FORTY THIEVES (1944) - After a montage of action scenes and screaming headlines showing how Sheriff Cassidy has cleaned up a town in Texas, the film establishes that the election for sheriff is coming up by having California practicing a speech infront of a little boy and a dog. Shortly thereafter, Tad Hammond, played by Douglass Dumbrille, rides into town. Hoppy thought he put Hammond away for good, but he's been paroled and Hoppy is his parole officer. Hammond goes into the Texas Panhandle saloon and meets owner Jerry Doyle, played by future Superman Kirk Alyn. Doyle complains about how his business has been awful since Hoppy cleaned up the town. Finding out that most of his old outlaw friends have been chased across the border, Hammond figures that he could raise about forty of them to come to town on election day and elect Doyle as the new sheriff. In addition to the forty, Hammond has his friends telling every voter who has to travel into town to vote to not bother either because the election has been called off or because the river washed out the bridge. When Buck Peters, played by Herbert Rawlinson again, and the Bar 20 boys are on the road to vote, the Garms Brothers - Sam played by Jack Rockwell and Joe played by Bob Kortman - engage in a shootout to keep them out of town. After Hoppy races off to help the Bar 20 boys, Clanton, played by Hal Taliaferro, starts a fight with California and Jimmy so that Ike Simmons, played by Glenn Strange, can break into the ballot box, pull out all of the cast ballots, and substitute that what will hand the election to Doyle. When Cassidy arrives in town with the captured Garms gang, Hammond triumphantly tells him that "I've got a new parole officer". Knowing the election is a fraud, Judge Reynolds, played by Robert Frazer, plans to contact the Governor. Doyle begins to regret his win when the Garms gang begins breaking up his saloon in celebration. Hammond puts a bounty on Cassidy for $2,000.00 and who ever wins a hand of poker gets first shot. The players are startled to realize that Cassidy is watching. Accusing Doyle of conspiracy to murder, Cassidy reminds Doyle it is his duty to arrest all of the bad guys. Doyle says he can't, so Cassidy gives everyone 12 hours to get out of town. As it is midnight, the clocking ticking to high noon has a very different meaning from the 1952 movie. As the church bell rings high noon, Hoppy, California and Jimmy step out on the street. Luckily, when the bandit gang, led by Hammond, attack, enough townsmen join in with guns to chase the gang away. Judge Reynolds' daughter, Katherine, played by Louise Currie, volunteers to take the fraudulent ballots to the capitol to enlist the Governors' help, with Jimmy coming along as a bodyguard. Of course, the bad guys kidnap Katherine and Jimmy and lure Hoppy into a trap. Rather than go alone, Hoppy forces Doyle to come along. Did the bad guys bushwack Hoppy from a distance? Will California and the Bar 20 boys rescue the young kidnapped couple? Aside from the comedy scenes, this is easily one the best Hopalong Cassidy films. Here's another screenplay co-written by Michael Wilson that has a political bent. Lesley Selander directed. This is the last Hopalong Cassidy movie produced by Harry Sherman Productions.

FOOL'S GOLD (1946) - Why William Boyd didn't make a Hopalong Cassidy movie in 1945 may have been due to his acquiring the rights from Harry Sherman Productions and starting Hopalong Cassidy Productions Inc. Naturally Boyd as Hoppy and Andy Clyde as California returned, but Rand Brooks stepped in as the whipper-snapper Lucky Jenkins, a character first seen in 1937's HILLS OF OLD WYOMING and played by Russell Hayden. The film begins with Lucky complaining about there being no action. Colonel Jed Landy, played by Forbes Murray, shows up and asks Hoppy to going into the robber's roust of Twin Buttes and convince his son, Bruce Landy - played by Stephen Barclay - to return and face the court martial for striking his commanding officer. Hoppy leaves a note telling California and Lucky not to follow, so the two question the only black handy man on the ranch, played by Fred "Snowflake" Toones - in the "Stepin'Fetchit" tradition, who tells them of the mention of Twin Buttes. Dressed in cattle buyer duds, Hoppy goes undercover. It turns out that Bruce has fallen in with a gang run by Professor Dixon, played by Robert Emmett Keane, who collects and studies spiders. Dixon's daughter, Jessie - played by Jane Randolph, is in love with Bruce and is trying to convince him to face the court martial, but Bruce is hot-tempered and is counting on getting alot of money from helping to rob a gold shipment. California and Lucky arrive in town pretending to be pedders. They help Hoppy to realize that the bad guys are plotting to waylay a gold shipment headed to the mint. The Professor stops Bruce and Jessie from trying to getaway, so Jessie turns to Hoppy for help. Our heroic trio are captured by the Professor, who plans to do away with them using poisonous spiders. Our heroes turn the tables, tie up the Professor and ride off to prevent the gold robbery. When Jessie arrives at the hideout, she discovers that the Professor knocked over his display and the spiders have killed her father. As Bruce joins in stopping the robbery, everyone feels that his court martial won't be so bad. George Archainbaud directed.

DANGEROUS VENTURE (1947) - Some Indians are resulting some cattle. Indian boy Jose, played by Neyle Morrow, is watching for afar, when Dan Morgan, played by Harry Cording, and Kane, played by Francis McDonald see him and give chase. After the two white men start shooting, Jose rides into Hoppy, California and Lucky and asks for help. Our heroic trio prevent the white guys from grabbing the young Indian, who rides away. Kane explains to Hoppy that "ghost Indians" have been raiding alot lately, often dropping carved stone amulets. It turns out the the Indians herding cattle are actually white guys costumed to look like Indians, and they are in cahoots with Morgan and Kane. Hoppy talks with the Marshal, played by Jack Quinn, who says that the Indian trouble started when Morgan arrived. Hoppy hears that an old friend, Doctor Harmon, is on a new expedition to look for Indian artifacts. It turns out that it is the doctor's daughter, Sue Harmon, played by Betty Alexander, who is with Dt. Atwood, played by Douglas Evans. She hopes to prove that the Tillamook Indians were the last of the Aztecs driven from Mexico by Cortez. Jose is to be a guide for the expedition, but Morgan and Kane show up to threaten Jose, so Hoppy and friends decide to go along to protect the expedition. Hoppy meets with Xeoli, the elder of the Indians, and promises that the scientists are not going to loot the burial grounds. It turns out that Atwood does indeed plan to loot the burial grounds, and goes into partnership with Morgan to destroy the expedition and kill Hoppy. Things get complicated when Xeoli becomes convinced that Hoppy has lied, and Jose's sister, Talu, played by Patricia Tate, captures California and plans to sacrifice him to the fire god. More complications occur when Lucky gets appointed a deputy marshal with an arrest warrant for Morgan. Hoppy stops California from being sacrificed, and stops Morgan from looting. Atwood is killed by an Indian while looting, and falls into the sacrificial fire. Hoppy convinces Xeoli to give up life as a ghost indian, come out of the caves in the hills and live below like the White man. Kenneth Tobey has a small role as Red while George Archainbaud again directed.

HOPPY'S HOLIDAY (1947) - After beating California and Lucky in an horse race, Hoppy informs them that he plans to spend his holiday at home on the Bar 20. California and Lucky complain that they want to go some place else and have some fun. There are signs posted announcing a big celebration in Mesa City, but Hoppy says that he only plans to visit for a half hour to buy supplies. Well, Lucky signs up for a Bucking Horse contest and California for a Square Dancing contest which requires that they stay over night, to which Hoppy reluctantly agrees. Mayor Patton, played by Andrew Tombes, owns just about everything in Mesa City, including the bank into which about $100,000 has been deposited for an irrigation project planned by Dunning, played by Leonard Penn. As Dunning drives an horseless carriage, he attracts alot of attention. During the Square Dance contest that night, California goes to the store to buy a new suit, and puts his old clothes into a new suitcase he buys. There is an explosion at the bank, and four men race out with one carrying a suitcase. The suitcase-carrying robber runs into California in the dark, and naturally picks up California's suitcase when he runs away. Later, hotel clerk Jed, played by Jeff Corey, sees California open his suitcase and is surprised to find the money. Jed locks California in the hotel room and runs off to tell the sheriff. Wanting to hide the suitcase, California puts it in the dumbwaiter thinking it's the closet. Later, when he finds his door locked, California takes the dumbwaiter to leave the room. By this time the sheriff and many towns people arrive with Jed to arrest California. California wants to give up the suitcase, but it has disappeared. Eventually, it comes out that Dunning's irrigation project is phony, and that he is the boss of the robbers. Everybody gathers in the hotel in the morning hoping that California will tell where the suitcase is. Hoppy sees that Jed has the suitcase, but then so does Dunning who shoots both Hoppy and Jed. The bad guys make a getaway in the horseless carriage, with the posse in pursuit on horseback. Eventually the bad guys are arrested and the money recovered and our heroes head back to the Bar 20. George Archainbaud directed again.

THE DEAD DON'T DREAM (1948) - An Hopalong Cassidy film in the style of Agatha Christie, THE DEAD DON'T DREAM is a murder mystery set in the Last Chance Inn. Hoppy, California and Lucky put on their best duds to attend Lucky's marriage to Mary Benton, played by Mary Tucker, aka Mary Ware. However, Mary's uncle is missing. With Earl Wesson, played by Leonard Penn, Hoppy explores the uncle's mine and they find the uncle's dead body. That night, Hoppy's old friend Jesse Williams, played by Stanley Andrews, shows up at the Inn, and spends the night in the same room from which the uncle disappeared. In the morning, Williams is missing. Sheriff Tompson, played by Forbes Murray, arrives. Hoppy takes the sheriff to the mine, only to discover that the uncle's body has disappeared. Tompson goes to sleep in the same room from which the uncle and Williams disappeared, and even though Hoppy and Lucky are walking around in the night, Tompson disappears. The owner of the Inn is wheelchair-bound Jeff Potter, played by John Parrish, who has an outlaw brother named Larry Potter, played by Bob Gabriel. Larry is a suspect until he is shot dead. Two other suspects are Bart Lansing, played by Francis McDonald, and Duke the handyman, played by Richard Alexander. While the mystery is solved, what happened to the missing men is never explained and the plot doesn't quite make sense. George Archainbaud is again the director.

SINISTER JOURNEY (1948) - Hoppy, California and Lucky ride up to train tracks and Hoppy mentions that he has an appointment with Tom Smith, played by Stanley Andrews, the Vice President of the Line. A passing train spooks California's horse. Lucky follows to make sure California's okay while Hoppy continues on to his appointment. Suddenly, Lee Garvin, played by John Kellogg, stops Hoppy on the road and asks for help for he's worried that his wife has been poisoned. His wife, Jessie Garvin, played by Elaine Riley, is only suffering from Loco Weed in the water, for which Hoppy has a remedy. Lee is convinced that villains deliberately poisoned the wells. Considered the best brake man on the line, Lee feels he's being punished because he married Tom Smith's daughter without the big man's approval. In the town of Wheeler, California climbs into a rail engine and gets into trouble playing around, while Hoppy and Lucky meet with Tom Smith and his secretary Harmon Roberts, played by Don Haggerty. Smith is convinced that Lee was the burglar, seen in a flashback, that went through his papers one night and found out that he's become rich from some oil-rich property he owns in Oklahoma. Hoppy takes the job as store keeper in order to investigate some strange goings-on. Lee is convinced that our heroic trio is there to spy on him, and when he finds Ben Watts, played by Will Orlean - aka Will Orleans, hoboing on the train, he worries that Watts will tell everyone that they spent time in prison together. It turns out that Roberts and another railroad employee named Banks, played by Harry Strang, are plotting against Smith. They kidnap the drunken Watts, plant his distinctive polka dot scarf, wound Smith with a bullet through a window and accuse Lee of hiring Watts to try and kill Smith. Hoppy finds Watts trying to leave town on a train, and just before Watts can talk, Roberts shoots him dead. Hoppy arranges for Smith to listen to Lee's explanation, and then, stupidly, allows Lee to meet with Smith at night alone. Roberts clubs Lee unconscious and then murders Smith. Mysteriously, Lee is missing when everyone rushes in for Roberts to accuse Lee of the crime. A massive manhunt for Lee begins as Roberts convinces Jessie that her father was broke and that she should go back east with him. The heroic trio finds Lee and then must stop Roberts' special train so that Hoppy can lie that Banks has confessed that Roberts murdered Smith. Roberts panics and tries to put the blame back on Banks, thus confessing and being arrested by Marshal Reardon, played by Herbert Rawlinson. All of Jessie's previous denunciations of her husband are simply ignored for an hasty happy ending. Not only does Hoppy never wear his usual black outfit for this movie, he also never wears a gun. George Archainbaud again directed.

FALSE PARADISE (1948) - Again George Archainbaud is in the director's chair for a film about the new owners of the Paradise Ranch. A retired professor, Alonzo Larson, played by Joel Friedkin, jumps off his buckboard to chase after a butterfly leaving his daughter, Anne - played by Elaine Riley, alone. Deal Marden, played by Don Haggerty, rides up and tries to manhandle her. After she slaps him in the face, he slaps the back of her horse causing it to gallop away with her yelling for help. Luckily Hoppy, now wearing a new grey outfit instead of his usual black, hears and rescues her. The Paradise Ranch turns out to be a dump, but Hoppy thought he saw traces of silver. Checking with Bentley, played by Kenneth R. MacDonald, the man who sold the land to the Larsons, Hoppy confirms that the land is completely their's. Going to the banker, Hoppy gets the money to start looking for silver, but the banker, played by Cliff Clark, is in league with Bentley. When the villains can't buy back the property, they try sabotage inorder to stop the Larson's ability to pay back the loan. Bentley gets Marden to get a job at the mine and plans are made to steal the silver before it gets to the mill. On horseback, the bad guys attack the wagons, but one wagon is filled with gunmen ready to defend the silver. The silver is delivered to the mill, but Hoppy has to kidnap Bently and the banker in order for them to receive the payment against the loan on time. Again Hoppy lies in order to get the villains to agree to leave the territory.

STRANGE GAMBLE (1948) - After twelve pictures, Hopalong Cassidy Productions Inc. ended their deal with United Artists with this feature that shows no indication that anyone knew this was the end of the line. Hoppy finally lets California and Lucky in on the fact that they are not on a cattle-buying trip, but are working as federal agents to uncover a counterfeiting operation. An anonymous letter arrived with one counterfeit bill informing that the bill was made in Silver City. Also on the letter was a drawing of a comet. Soon after that, the trio sees a stagecoach being driven by a woman that is out of control. Pulling the stage to a stop, our heroes find that the driver, Nora Murray - played by Elaine Riley, has taken the reins because the hired driver is passed out drunk. Also drunk is Nora's brother Sid, played by William Leicester. Nora is worried because her sister-in-law Mary, played by Joan Barton, is very sick and must get the a doctor in Silver City right away. Our heroes get the stagecoach to Silver City, but Mordigan, played by James Craven, refuses to shelter any women in his town. Doc White, played by Joel Friedkin, gives up his room to the Murrays, just as the drunk Sid begins to brag about how he's got alot of money because his father owned the Silver Belle mine. As our heroes search the town for any mention of "comet", they fail to save Sid from getting into a crooked card game in Mordigan's saloon and being fatally shot - supposedly a suicide because he lost so much money. Soon after comes the news that his wife Mary has also died. Mordigan wants Nora out of town, but she tells everyone that Hoppy is her fiance, so they back down. Mordigan orders Hoppy killed, but Longhorn, played by Francis McDonald, fails with a cattle stampede, and Pete Walters, played by Robert B. Williams, fails with a bushwhack. Mordigan wants to use card dealer Ramon De Lara, played by Albert Morin, to try, not knowing that he is actually a Mexican federal agent also investigating the counterfeiting operation. In order to have some place to stay in town, California, Lucky and Nora buy the Chinese restaurant owned by Wong, played by Lee Tung Foo, and name it "Comet". Soon after Doc White reveals that he is "comet", but gets gunned down before telling all he knows. Hoppy finds the Silver Belle mine, which is where the gang is printing the "funny money". Nora's father, John Murray, played by Herbert Rawlinson, turns out to be alive and as he was the best engraver in Boston, was forced by Mordigan to make the plates for the counterfeiting operation. As Hoppy is so hard to kill, Mordigan pretends to agree to allow Hoppy into the operation as a partner. Eventually it ends with a shootout at the mine, but though Hoppy guns down Longhorn, he takes all of the other bad guys as prisoners. Afraid that if Hoppy marries Nora, she'll be giving them orders, California and Lucky tell Hoppy they are quitting the Bar 20. Hoppy tells them that she's jilted him, and both friends are happy. Again the direction is by George Archainbaud. Now owning all of the Hopalong Cassidy films, William Boyd made a deal to show them on TV, making him the first TV Western star in 1948. In 1952, when William Boyd decided to do a Hopalong Cassidy TV series, he did away with a whipper-snapper character and just had a comedy sidekick, now called Red Connors and played by Edgar Buchanan. Archainbaud directed 26 of the 52 half hour episodes.


David Deal enjoyed:

QUEEN OF SPADES (48) - Fanatical gambler Anton Walbrook learns that local, elderly Dame Edith Evans once sold her soul for the secret of always winning at cards.  When he tries to force the knowledge from her she dies. Then he dreams that she tells him the secret.  This is a fine, spooky film, and comes recommended.

DAY OF THE OUTLAW (59) - From 2009: "Good winter western with Robert Ryan as a bad ass rancher and Burl Ives as a badder ass rogue soldier.  Packed with adult themes, brutality, a solid B cast of supporters, and a ton of snow. The "removing the bullet" scene is right up there with RONIN's.  Recommended."

BIG GUNS (73) - Watched this on Alain Delon's birthday.

BATTLE OF THE WORLDS (61) - Sinister Cinema's copy of this Antonio Margheriti sci-fi has French credits, Italian language, and English subtitles. It is wide, sharp, and colorful and it is enhanced too!  Excellent!


Mildly enjoyed:

QUEEN OF THE SEAS (61) - Lisa Gastoni is always a pleasure to watch but Umberto Lenzi's pirate adventure is undone by Something Weird's poor presentation.

BOMBAY MAIL (34) - Scotland Yard's Edmund Lowe investigates murder on an Indian train in a modestly entertaining, exotic mystery.

REFLECTIONS IN BLACK (71) - There is more nudity in Cult Action's version, but the image quality is terrible.

THE BRASHER DOUBLOON (47) - George Montgomery is Philip Marlowe in John Rahm's version of the Raymond Chandler novel The High Window.  The detective chases down a stolen coin that people are being murdered for.  Montgomery seems out of his element, but this is not unworthy.

THE DARK HOUR (36) - Two detectives unravel an uninvolving mystery.


Charles Gilbert watched:

MONSTER FROM GREEN HELL (1957) Colorized version with Jim Davis is a short running time. Space engineers trace a lost rocket to the jungles and find a giant insect type creature.

HORROR OF DRACULA (1958) Couldn't resist another viewing, this time presented on Facebook. Every aspect of this film is compelling to me. My favorite Peter Cushing for this role here and in BRIDES OF DRACULA as Van Helsing.

THE CRAWLING EYE (1958) B&W. Also from the imagination of Jimmy Sangster is this sci-fi horror with alternate title THE TROLLENBERG TERROR. An ominous radioactive cloud is juxtaposed next to a popular Swiss climbing mountain known as Trollenberg, monitored by an observatory. Particularly gruesome beheadings are occurring to climbers, until the hero figures out the weakness of the aliens residing in the cloud. Forrest Tucker, Laurence Payne, and Janet Munro.

HERCULES THE AVENGER (1965) The last of Reg Park's roles as Hercules uses a generous amount of celluloid from his first two films and a medley of sounds from many peplum with the finale borrowed from BEAST OF BABYLON AGAINST THE SON OF HERCULES. Gionvanni Cianfriglia looks quite thin at times. Adriana Ambesi replaces Leonora Ruffo as wife Deianira.

Combat S02E22 'Counter-Punch'. John Peyser directed this middling episode where Sgt. Saunders (Vic Morrow) welcomes stray GIs Steve Gravers and Malachi Throne in French TO (theater of operation) planning to take over a train currently commandeered by German soldiers.

Conan the Adventurer S01E01 and 2.  'The Heart of the Elephant'. German bodybuilder Ralf Moeller plays Conan in the television series with guest stars Mickey Rooney, Edward Albert, and Kimberly Kelley. Jeremy Kemp is the recurring villain.


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