Aces and Eights (1936)
Dapper Tim McCoy Rides Again
Gambler 'Gentleman' Tim Madigan (Tim McCoy) and his sidekick Lucky (Jimmy Aubrey) are becoming so well known that when they arrive at Rawhide they spot a notice up to warn people to be aware for the smartly dressed gentleman gambler. It doesn't prevent him from playing having watched a young man, Jose Hernandez (Red Lease), lose his money and in doing so uncovering that the dealer is a cheat. When later on the cheating gambler is shot the sheriff thinks it was Tim whilst Jose thinks it was himself. With Tim taking refuge at the ranch of Don Hernandez (Joseph Girard) and his daughter Juanita (Luana Walters) he not only discovers that Jose is Don's estranged son but there is trouble afoot as the saloon owner and the gambler are trying to steal the ranch from the Hernandez family.
When it comes to early westerns I often find them now more amusing that entertaining and that is certainly the case of "Aces and Eights". Not only is it comically convoluted and features the false looking action of a bygone era but many of the ideas are comical to. Take the dapper 'Gentleman' Tim, here is a man who not only doesn't carry a gun but has the strength to rip a pack of cards in four, pretty impressive for a man who doesn't really look that strong.
But ignoring the now comical aspects of "Aces and Eights" and what you have is a reasonable mid 1930s western for those who love the genre. His character may now be a bit of a joke ut Tim McCoy plays 'Gentleman' Tim with some form of conviction whilst Rex Lease is entertaining as the wide eyed Jose. And whilst the action has the staged feel there is just enough of it so it never becomes boring but at the same time never becomes just about the action. But that in truth is it as "Aces and Eights" is just another typical mid 30s oater featuring the sharp eyed Tim McCoy.
What this all boils down to is that again "Ages and Eights" is one of those movies whose only appeal now is to those who are looking to watch as many westerns as they can as watched for western entertainment it is now expectedly dated and a little corny.
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