Arizona Stage Coach (1942)

Routine for Ray and the Range Busters

The Range Busters, Crash Corrigan, Dusty King and Alibi Terhune are having some fun on the Flying R ranch when their old friend Larry Meadows shows up with his niece Dorrie Willard. They need help as Dorrie's brother Ernie has been taken in by Tex Laughlin and has allowed him to use the family ranch. What Ernie doesn't know is that Laughlin is a secret member of a gang which is terrorizing the local town.

Watching some of the old western quickies from the 30s and 40s can be a strange experience if you are not use to them. Take "Arizona Stage Coach" here is a western which not only features some western friends having some horseplay and making one of them sing whilst strung up by their ankles but one of them has a ventriloquists dummy. Yes that is not something you tend to see in westerns made these days, in fact having watched many a western I don't remember seeing a dummy in any western post the 40s.

The thing is that whilst "Arizona Stage Coach" has these things which now appear quirky beyond that it doesn't have much else other than an extremely typical storyline. I have lost count as to how many of these early westerns I have watched which feature a hero and his two buddies getting asked to help when either a ranch is in trouble from a devious businessman or a cunning outlaw and as such this works through this incredibly familiar set up in the simplest way possible. It may have been fine at the time as a Saturday morning flick for children it makes it very ordinary when watched now.

What this all boils down to is that "Arizona Stage Coach" is just a typical early western which beyond the quirks feels like it recycles a storyline which had already been through the movie recycler a few times before this.