The Silver Whip

b70-6380

THE SILVER WHIP will not be of any interest to those who don’t care for westerns, but fans of the genre may find it a pleasant little time-passer if they have an extra 73 minutes lying around.

f8e1219dc9ace823dab18328c42f34b7

Rory roughs ’em up on their way to the clink

Directed apace by Harmon Jones, knocked out for 20th Century Fox in 1953, it’s a modestly budgeted ($560,000) b&w bread & butter exercise designed to give some undemanding star-building fodder to two of the studio’s handsome second-string leads and an up’n comer of the day: Dale Robertson, 30, (as ‘Race Crim’–wouldn’t you love to actually say you know a guy named Race Crim? *), Rory Calhoun, 31, and Robert Wagner, 23.

the-silver-whip-L-6pRaRl

Dale wants to skip the jail jazz

Go into a drugstore back when (I think Fillmore was President, fetch my specs) and there would be a circular spinner rack with paperbacks. Among them would be a batch of slim ‘pocket-vest’ cowboy novels (something for grandpa).  Fitting that bill, the screenplay by veteran Jesse L. Lasky,Jr. is from Jack Schaefer’s book “First Blood” (he is best known for Shane and Monte Walsh ).  Whippersnapper Wagner is given reins on a stage-line run that gets hijacked by bad guys (perforated in due course).  Mentor Robertson and sheriff pal Calhoun go after the varmints, with clashing views on how to deal with ’em—shoot on sight or string’em up (Dale) or capture for trial-by-jury (Rory). Local gals Kathleen Crowley and Lola Albright squeak their peace (I know, just let it go…).

vlcsnap-2015-05-28-21h28m12s210_zpsfx3zpqdb

A  Bob’s gotta do…

No frills, no nonsense, nicely photographed, well-done action, decent work from the he-men. With James Millican, J.M. Kerrigan (kindly horse-shoe’n spouter of Shakespeare and other rosy high-falutin’ gibberish), Ian MacDonald, John Doucette (angry lynch mob harangue’r), Burt Mustin and— in the background somewhere— Chuck Connors.

*I had a friend named Race King, so I guess I win, at least some Crackerjacks.

46580b0wkq4h1

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s