EVERYTHING ABOUT A MOVIE?
|THUNDERING HERD, THE (aka: Buffalo Stampede) (director: Henry Hathaway; screenwriters: Jack Cunningham/Mary Flannery/story by Zane Grey; cinematographer: Ben Reynolds; music: Karl Hajos; cast: Randolph Scott (Tom Doane), Judith Allen (Milly Fayre), Buster Crabbe (Bill Hatch, stage driver), Noah Beery (Randall Jett), Harry Carey (Clark Spraque, Hide Dealer), Monte Blue (Smiley a Buffalo Hunter), Raymond Hatton (Jude Pilchuk, Spraque's Partner), Barton MacLane (Pruitt, Jett's Henchman), Blanche Frederici (Mrs. Jane Jett), Frank Rice (blacksmith); Runtime: 62; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Harold Hurley; Timeless Video; 1933)|
Zane Grey tale."
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
Henry Hathaway ("The Dark Corner"/"True Grit"/"Niagara") directs with verve this lively Zane Grey tale, that's written by Jack Cunningham and Mary Flannery.
It's set in the Western
frontier in 1874. Tom
Doane (Randolph Scott)
turns his low paying stage driver job over to Bill (Buster Crabbe) and
partners with trading post owner Clark Spraque (Harry Carey) to hunt for buffalo hides. The night
before going on the hunt with Sprague and old-timer hunter Jude Pilchuk (Raymond Hatton), Tom's to marry Milly Fayre (Judith
Allen). But she's kidnapped by
buffalo hide thief Randall
Jett (Noah Beery), her
lecherous ruthless outlaw step-father who married to the hateful harpy
Jane (Blanche Frederici) after her mom died. Tom's rescue attempt
is thwarted when he's knocked unconscious and shot by Randall, and sent
back to his camp while bound to his horse. Months go by before Tom
reunites with runaway Milly, and he then must rescue Sprague and his
hunting party from an Indian attack. Tom rides to get help from hunter
Smiley (Monte Blue) and his wagon party, and they stave off the
Indians. Meanwhile the violent Jane and her cutthroat hubby shoot it
out, as the jealous wife shows him whose boss. These baddies kill each
other off, and Tom after the successful hunt plans on wedding Milly.
Meanwhile the Indians declare war on the white men for needlessly
slaughtering their food supply.
The low-budget Paramount film borrowed stock footage from William K. Howard's 1925 silent version (the stampede of wagons across a frozen lake). Jack Holt was the lead in the original and wore a pencil-thin mustache. Scott wore the same mustache.
REVIEWED ON 4/14/2011 GRADE: B
Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"
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