Ghost Riders in the Sky / Pat Derry, Marty Robbins, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson.
The 3 Mesquiteers made 8 Serial episodes 1940, but this post was a tuff project.
A lot of the 1940 images just weren't that good - and hard to find.
They also required a lot of editing. They were beaten up pretty badly.
I've injected a few other images to make the post worthy.
A rather odd poster. Boxers?
A lobby card.
That old soft spot.
Works for me.
Colorized by My Favorite Westerns
All for one ...
The 3 Mesquiteers had several personnel changes over the years and just kept on riding.
This new edition retained Bob Livingston and brought in Bob Steele and Rufe Davis.
That was a lot of work ...
Red River / Main Theme / Dimitri Tiomkin
Leaving Fen behind.
- Colleen Gray
“Why do Indians always want to be burnin' up good wagons?"
- John Wayne with Walter Brennan.
"Never liked seein' strangers. This is 'cause no stranger ever good news'd me."
- Brennan, Mickey Kuhn, and Wayne.
"Get a shovel and a Bible."
“Give me ten years and I'll have that brand on the
gates of the greatest ranch in Texas.”
"Nice. Awful nice."
- John Ireland with Montgomery Clift
"There are only 2 things more beautiful than a good gun.
A Swiss watch or a woman from anywhere."
"Ever had a Swiss watch?"
“You’re as good as they say you are. Maybe as good as me.”
"I think he's bluffin."
- Noah Beery Jr., Brennan, and Clift.
Night watch: Wayne, Clift, Harry Carey Jr.
"You'da shot him right between the eyes."
"Just a sure as you're standing there."
"Go ahead. Say it."
"You wuz wrong Mr. Dunson."
"You think I'm to blame for that?"
"Just as sure as you're sitting there."
Crossing the 'Red'.
Calm in the midst of the storm.
"I'm the law."
"I'm going to kill you Matt."
"Do you remember?"
"I can remember."
"We're looking for Abilene."
- Beery and Clift.
"Welcome to Abilene."
- Harry Carey Sr., Clift, Ireland, and Beery.
"You know that young man isn't going to use his gun don't cha?"
“Yeah. But I haven’t any such notion.”
"Go ahead ... Draw!"
"I said Draw!"
"OK I'll make ya!"
"Go ahead, beat each other crazy ..."
"Use this ... "
Louse Brooks - Pandora's Box / Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark
Overland Stage Raiders is perhaps most famous for being the last film that Louise Brooks appeared in.
Louise Brooks on John Wayne:
"This is no actor but the hero of all mythology miraculously brought to life... John was, in fact,
that which Henry James defined as the greatest of all works of art - a purely beautiful being."
"This was the final film of Louise Brooks. NOTE: Contrary to popular belief,
this was not intended to be her "comeback" film;
she made it because she needed the money. She was paid $300 (equal to $5180,
adjusted for inflation in 2017) for the film.
Not long after it was released, she was found working as a salesgirl at Saks Fifth Avenue
at a salary of $40 (equivalent to $690 in '17) a week."
Much could (and has) been written about Louise. Let's say was a beautiful and controversial Star
and still has a large following of admirers.
It puzzles me that Overland Stage Raiders plays so loosely with
Western Movie traditions by using buses and planes, etc.
but then fail to exploit Louise Brooks immense charisma and sex appeal???
But lots of things puzzle me.
"I have been taking stock of my 50 years since I left Wichita. How I have existed fills me with horror for I failed everything. Spelling, arithmetic, writing, swimming, tennis, golf, dancing, singing, acting, wife, mistress, whore, friend, even cooking. And I do not excuse myself with the usual escape of not trying. I tried with all my heart."
- Louise Brooks
If there's any one thing you could say about Louise it was that she had an incredible
amount of that mystical substance called Charisma.
Judge for yourself.
I could easily post about 100 pics of Louise.
Her short bobbed hairstyle was her trademark sensation.
Imitated by many - achieved by few
"A well dressed woman, even though her purse is painfully empty, can conquer the world."
- Louise Brooks
She starred in seventeen silent films and eight sound films.
On February 6, 1932, she filed for bankruptcy and began dancing in nightclubs to earn a living.
By 1946, she had to take a $40-a-week job as a sales girl at Saks Fifth Avenue to make a living.
"Love is a publicity stunt, and making love - after the first curious raptures -
is only another petulant way to pass the time waiting for the studio to call."
- Louise Brooks
Was close friends with IT Girl Clara Bow.
Many photos of Louise have been colorized,
but I think the monochromes are still the best.
"The great art of films does not consist in descriptive movement of face and body,
but in the movements of thought and soul transmitted in a kind of intense isolation."
- Louise Brooks
She left her home at age 16 to join a modern dance company.
"I have a gift for enraging people, but if I ever bore you, it'll be with a knife."
- Louise Brooks
"In my dreams I am not crippled. In my dreams, I dance,"
- Louise Brooks
Dance she did.
And still does.
Cowboy Rhythm / Patsy Montana / 1938
The Great Depression is ending.
Franklin D. Roosevelt is US President.
Hitler's Third Reich marches into Austria.
Howard Hughes flys Round the world in 3 days.
Orson Welles's broadcasts The War of the Worlds.
Seabiscuit beats War Admiral at Pimlico.
A gallon of Gas costs 10 cents.
Douglas Fairbanks dies.
Evel Knievel is born.
Consider this a review. I know these B grade Serial Westerns are often looked back on with fondness by some folks. But not by me. As an 8 year old kid watching Westerns every Saturday morning in 1956, I gotta tell ya, this is the last thing I wanted to see. They seemed to contain everything that I figured shouldn't be in a Western: Dolled up Cowboys wearing little kerchiefs; often singing with some sappy sidekick; cars! trucks!! buses!!! airplanes???!!!!; and Ventriloquist dummies! MY GOD! What kind of Western is that!! ?? Turned my stomach. I wanted to see Rory Calhoun or Randolph Scott or Audie Murphy. Anybody but this stuff. This definitely wasn't the Golden Era of Westerns.
Fortunately!!! this would soon be coming to a merciful end 1939 when Director John Ford Directed Stagecoach (Starring John Wayne). Ford saw that Westerns could be legitimate Art. So he did it. And created some Classics: Stagecoach, My Darling Clementine, ... This changed everything. Oh Yeah things still occasionally fell back in formula pulp, but there was more than enough good stuff on the way.
Pals of the Saddle / by "Just Me and Dad" The Cantrell Family of Springfield MO.
Back about February 6, 2017, I left off my series of posts called
John Wayne Western Filmography.
I had progressively worked through most of John's early Westerns
and left off after Pals of the Saddle (1938).
Amongst all that I had done posts or Rio Bravo (1959 )and The Shootist (1976)
along with The Merchandising of John Wayne: Booze, Smokes ...
don't think I've done John's Guns yet.
I'll get to that one day.
Pals of the Saddle / The Overstake Sisters c.1936
At that time I had done profiles on these early John Wayne Westerns:
The Big Trail
The Range Feud
Ride Him Cowboy
The Big Stampede
The Telegraph Trail
Somewhere In Sonora
Riders of Destiny
The Man From Monterey
West of The Divide
The Trail Beyond
The Star Packer
Randy Rides Alone
The Man From Utah
The Lucky Texan
The Lawless Frontier
Neath The Arizona Skies
The New Frontier
The Desert Trail
The Dawn Rider
Winds Of The Wasteland
The Lonely Trail
The Lawless Nineties
King of The Pecos
California Straight Ahead
Born to The West
Santa Fe Stampede
Red River Range
Pals of The Saddle
Early Westerns yet to be covered:
Overland Stage Raiders (1938)
Three Texas Steers
The Night Riders
It's not likely I'll stay on track this time either,
but we'll venture forth anyway.
Shepherd of the Hills was the first film in which John Wayne worked with director Henry Hathaway. They didn't work together again for another 19 years and then in the Sixties did four films culminating with Wayne's Oscar winning performance in True Grit.
The Shepherd of the Hills is is the first John Wayne film in Technicolor. A high budget film, a rarity in the Depression-era.
Henry Hathaway directs this first talkie remake of two prior films versions of The Shepherd of the Hills filmed in 1919 and 1928.
The Hayes Office were shocked and appalled by the scene in which Sammy (Betty Field) removes her shirt and displays her bare back to the camera. Director Henry Hathaway assured the Office that it was actually a man doubling for Betty Field during that particular moment. Field, as well as John Wayne, corroborated this. Years later, Field revealed that it was indeed her own bare back that was shown.
"You're not drunk if you can lie on the floor without holding on." - Dean Martin
I should have posted this back in January:
I'll get back to my John Wayne Filmography shortly.
in-hell-ill-be-in-good-company / the-dead-south
Not much to say ... have a boo.
Coming: more Rio Bravo ...
border affair / lee clayton
Rio Bravo spawned a lot of posters.
Mainly based around 2 images, most Rio Bravo posters are decent in design and artwork, though image quality from around the Net is often poor. Some images were so bad, I couldn't use them. I just couldn't recover the quality/resolution. This puzzles me because many older Westerns have superb images/posters. Fortunately, there is still enough good images to use.
More coming ...
dream lover / rick nelson
So WHY do I feel that Alcohol, Cigarettes, and Guns are controversial endorsements for John Wayne?
Because all of them can kill you.
It has to be said however, that in the 40's and 50's, all these product(?) were observed very differently than they are today. Smoking and drinking were openly promoted as being not only socially acceptable, but as sophisticated social practices. Although, in Rio Bravo, Dean's drinking is hardly portrayed as anything cool ...
But before I cover John’s Guns, I want to look at Rio Bravo a bit more.
I didn't used to like Rio Bravo. Now I can't remember why?
I know it's not the Best John Wayne Western, but I'd say it's the Most Popular John Wayne Western. I base this judgement purely upon how often it's shown on TV - which is Very Often. Almost weekly.
I've watched it myself on TV several times. I never plan to, but if it's on, I often find myself watching it. This would make it somewhat of Classic for me - a movie you can watch over and over.
So what's the attraction? I'd say it's the amazing Star Power of John Wayne, Dean Martin, Walter Brennan, Ricky Nelson, Angie Dickinson - and it's notable support cast Ward Bond, John Russell, Claude Akins ... even Harry Carey Jr. is in there. These folks casually drive this movie in an almost hypnotic and effortless fashion. Good story telling /marvelous Casting.
Howard Hawks of course, knew how to make a Western: Viva Villa (1934), Barbary Coast (1935), The Outlaw (1943), Red River (1948), The Big Sky (1952), Rio Bravo (1959), El Dorado (1967), and Rio Lobo (1970). Some Classics, most are popular and well known. Four feature John Wayne. Hawks knew John's Star Power would easily carry any movie - even if the movie seemed fairly formula. Guaranteed box office.
have u seen the rain / willie and paula nelson
We welcome you to join Team John Wayne as the charity
component of any race you do and participate in honor or
memory of your family, friends and co-workers who have
been affected by cancer. Team John Wayne members
receive a personal fundraising webpage, fundraising tips, fun
incentives, team camaraderie and more!
"I hope my family and my friends will be able to say that I was an honest, kind and fairly decent man."
- John Wayne
"Spectacular as its barbaric passions and savage conquests!"
So ... in 1956 John Wayne and Howard Hughes made The Conqueror.
It quickly became one of the most maligned and ridiculed movies in Hollywood history - though some now enjoy it as an entertainment curiosity
- a model of Hollywood big budget excesses.
John deeply regretting his involvement in the film, and agreed that he had been badly miscast.
I have to wonder however, if a lot of the scorn showered upon the movie wasn't an indirect attack upon John and Howard Hughes personally.
Both were strongly outspoken and controversial individuals of the day with plenty of opponents
just waiting for a chance to knock them out or the saddle - or the sky.
And they got it.
But The Conqueror wasn't all bad ...
The Selling of John Wayne ... Smoke ... Part 5 / John leaves his mark ...
the sound of silence / disturbed
"This is the West, sir. When the legend becomes fact, print the legend."
- From The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence / 1962
In 1954, John Wayne starred in the ill-fated big budget movie The Conqueror, (RKO Pictures, Howard Hughes Productions) filmed in the Utah desert.
Location: about a hundred miles from a former Nevada nuclear test site and where wind blown radioactivity had supposedly infected the whole area. Legend has it that this resulted in a large number of the film crew and Stars of the movie dying from various cancers. Nobody challenged this story for decades. By that time, the Legend had become Fact and is still being propagated today. So much so that there still several sources - particularly on the Internet - still propagating this myth. It's so ingrained by now that I can't imagine it will be dispelled any time soon.
But it's not hard to see why this myth is so powerful and durable: As Urban Legends go The Conqueror Cancer Legend is one of the best of all time. It's ingredients are purely fantastical:
- The Top movie Star of the day (and possibly all-time) - Mega Star,
- a bizarre madman genius Movie Mogul Inventor Test Pilot billionaire,
- A beautiful tragic femme fatale Star Actress,
- THE ATOMIC BOMB !!!!!!!!
- a huge, expensive Epic Hollywood production (9 million dollars!!!) that was also a BOMB - about an Historical figure - Mongolian mass murdurer tyrant:
- Deaths - seemingly many people dying horribly from cancer ...
You can't make this stuff up.
So there it was - just waiting to be explored; exploited; exploded.
And it lived up to the Billing.
September 14, 2009 / Was The Movie The Conqueror Really Cursed? A Look At Radiation Paranoia By Michael D. Shaw
Worth a read.
To John Wayne's credit, he never bought the bomb theory. He always admitted that his cancers and related illnesses (and eventual death) was directly related to his prolific smoking.
He never copped out.
"Tomorrow is the most important thing in life.
Comes into us at midnight very clean.
It's perfect when it arrives and it puts itself in our hands.
It hopes we've learned something from yesterday."
- John Wayne
The Selling of John Wayne ... Smoke ... Part 4
Yup, John Wayne was definitely a very heavy smoker and made several (TV) commercials, magazine ads, billboards, etc - promoting cigarettes - as did a great many other Movie Stars and Celebrities of his time. Today of course, smoking and tobacco products have fallen into disfavor and any such advertising is now banned.
Despite this, there is still some subtle forms of smoking advertising and promotions that still have a viable market - and which capitalize on John's enduring Iconic Star Power. One such product is cigarette lighters. Zippo lighters almost seem to have an small industry using John's image.
Smoking still obviously has a certain 'manly' appeal to some people and many such John Wayne lighters are hot "Collectibles". Frankly, it's evident that ANY John Wayne endorsed product/merchandise will eventually - or immediately - achieve Collector and Memorabilia status.
Plenty more lighters than I show here ...
And finally ... if you really need to cut down
on your smoking ...
... the John Wayne knife lighter.
Available on Amazon.