Saturday, July 23, 2011

Dodge City (1939)


July 7, 2011

62. Dodge City (1939)

Starring Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Ann Sheridan, Bruce Cabot, Frank McHugh, Alan Hale, John Litel, Henry Travers

Directed by Michael Curtiz

Plot: "A soldier of fortune takes on the corrupt boss of a Western town." (from TCMDb)

I'm not huge on Westerns, but I decided to watch this one for Olivia and Errol. I also like Ann Sheridan a lot, but this is definitely not her best role, as she gets very little screen time. Too be honest, this film confused me a little. That could be because I was only half paying attention, and because the cattle chases and all that caused me to lose some interest. I think I got the basic plot, though: Errol is the good guy; Alan Hale is his comic-relief sidekick (who gets a little annoying after a while); Olivia is Errol's feisty love interest; William Lundigan (in a role very different than the one I last saw him in!) is Olivia's rowdy brother; Bruce Cabot is the lawless bad guy; Ann Sheridan is the saloon girl; Frank McHugh is Olivia's uncle.

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Olivia and Errol are wonderful together, as usual. Like most of their pairings, they start out with an intense dislike of each other. [Of course we don’t really buy it, because we know they’ll eventually get together. But the sparks are still fun to watch.] Then they argue, and suddenly they are out on a date together (if you can call riding horses at sunset a date). I actually rewound to see if I missed something because I wasn't sure how they went from this (bickering) …

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…to this.

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I still wonder if I missed something? Ah, well, we knew it was bound to happen anyway. Never mind how we got there.

Despite the fact that most of the photos in this post include Errol and Olivia, they really don’t have that many scenes together. (It was hard to find photos of other things in the film, and I forgot to get screencaps. You can click on each image for the source.)

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There are certainly bar room brawls, stampedes, and gun fights aplenty. But I don’t really go for that. One of my favorite part of the movie is probably when Olivia trips Errol. Really! It's a very funny moment that is delightfully and playfully acted. Okay, okay…maybe Frank McHugh's laugh is the best part of the movie. (Seriously, has anyone ever noticed how hilarious his laugh is? It's like a very light, quiet 'hehehehee'. I don't know why but it just strikes me as really funny. :D)

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In conclusion, if you like classic westerns, stunning Technicolor, Olivia + Errol, or just want to hear what Frank McHugh's laugh sounds like, you'll probably want to check this out. tumblr_lht1z3BOXH1qg1naao1_500

 

P.S. On Monday I did a guest post on Sophie’s blog where I shared my six favorite Ginger Rogers films.

You can check it out HERE.

[Also, be sure to visit some of Sophie’s other posts and subscribe to her site. She has a great blog!]

4 comments:

  1. Have you seen "Four's a Crowd"? I think it's the only non-period drama/swashbuckler that Livvie and Errol made together (and it has Roz Russell for extra fabulousness!). It's not one of my favourite films, but it's entertaining :)

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  2. Yes! I've been meaning to see that. I have a copy of it but just have to
    watch it yet! :)

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  3. I agree!! I watched this movie, despite not being a big Western fan, to see Errol and Olivia together. I love them but this is not my favorite of their films. Their relationship didn't make much sense to me and I didn't really like either of their characters all that much... I don't know. Maybe it's just that I don't like Westerns. I think I read that in the original script, Olivia's brother is about to shoot Alan Hale and then Errol kills him (Olivia's brother) - thus her hatred. Which makes more sense. Ah well. It's still nice to see them together in a movie!

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  4. reel popcorn junkieMarch 12, 2013 at 7:11 AM

    Alan Hale works for me. His attendance at the temperance meeting is a joy to watch. How about his reaction when the brawl next door literally breaks through the wall?

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