DENNIS SCHWARTZ Movie Reviews

YODELIN' KID FROM PINE RIDGE (director: Joe Kane; screenwriters: story by Jack Natteford/Jack Natteford/Stuart & Dorrel McGowan; cinematographer: William Nobles; editor: Lester Orlebeck; music: Raoul Kraushaar; cast: Gene Autry (Himself), Smiley Burnette (Colonel Millhouse), Betty Bronson (Milly Baynum), LeRoy Mason (Parker), Jack Dougherty (Jeff Galloway, rustling partner), Lew Mehan (Parker's henchman), Charles Middleton (Mr. Arthur Autry), Russell Simpson (Bayliss Baynum), Henry Hall (Sheriff Martin), Guy Wilkerson (Turpentiner Zeke), Tennessee Ramblers (Themselves), Art Mix (Autry double); Runtime: 60; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: Armand Schaefer; Republic; 1937)

"The enjoyable Western has plenty of action, decent comedy and good songs by Gene."

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

Joe Kane ("Dakota"/"Hoodlum Empire"/"Flame of the Barbary Coast") directs this oddball Autry Western. It's lively and tuneful, with lots of action because of a range war in the Turpentine Pine Forests of Florida, between, of all things, turpentiners and cattlemen. The story is by the prolific Jack Natteford, who writes the screenplay with Stuart & Dorrel McGowan.

All the cattlemen, except for Gene Autry, believe the turpentiners are rustling their cattle. The feud erupts when the hotheaded cattlemen, including Gene's intransigent father (Charles Middleton), attempt to burn for grazing land the forest area. When Gene warns the hostile turpentiners, their nasty leader Bayliss Baynum (Russell Simpson) kicks him off the property and would have shot Gene if his young stepdaughter Milly (Betty Bronson) didn't hit his rifle. In the ensuing skirmish, Gene's dad is wounded and in anger kicks his son off the ranch for warning the enemy. For two years Gene is a rodeo star and returns home as the headliner in a Wild West Show run by the bumbling Colonel Millhouse (Smiley Burnette). Milly, who is in love with Gene and tired of the beatings given her by her mean stepdad, tells Gene she spotted in a hidden meadow with his father's cattle. When Gene investigates, the rustlers take him captive. But Gene escapes, and eventually, with the help of the show cowboys and Indians, tracks down the ruthless crooked cattleman Parker (LeRoy Mason) and his partner (Jack Dougherty) as the rustlers who are framing the turpentiners and who stole all of the cattle from Autry's ranch leaving the old man destitute.

The enjoyable Western has plenty of action, decent comedy and good songs by Gene and the Tennessee Ramblers.

REVIEWED ON 8/7/2013       GRADE: B

Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"

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