Arizona Trail (1943)
The Trent Water Wars
Johnny Trent (Tex Ritter) and his friend Kansas (Fuzzy Knight) are in San Francisco having a good time but end up returning to Trent's father's ranch in Arizona. His father is having trouble over water rights and someone trying to take his ranch from him but he is not too happy to see his estranged son and treats his foreman Wayne Carson (Dennis Moore) better than he does Johnny. But back home Johnny also meets Martha Brooks (Janet Shaw) who cares for Johnny's aging father and together along with Kansas try to get to the bottom of things and who he behind the trouble on the Trent ranch.
"Arizona Trail" feels like it was made a half a decade too late with its easy going Saturday morning western storyline and style. That style starts immediately with Trent and Kansas in a minor musical number followed by a moment of humour as they have a joke with some buskers. This easy going tone with Kansas providing comic relief flows through out the movie just like in the westerns of the 1930s and yes the musical aspect continues as well.
Aside from that well we have a standard western storyline with a rancher having trouble over some one trying to force him off his own land. It is incredibly typical with the only differences being is the addition of some animosity between father and son and the mystery of who is pulling the strings when it comes to the gang trying to force old man Trent of his land.
But whilst familiar from start to finish "Arizona Trail" is entertaining for those with a penchant for old westerns especially those which have a musical element, here provided by the Red River Valley Boys whose slow western songs are surprisingly enjoyable.
What this all boils down to is that "Arizona Trail" feels like a 1940s take on a 1930s western which makes it one more for western buffs rather than those looking for western entertainment. But as an introduction to bygone westerns of the 30s and 40s it is a gentle and enjoyable introduction benefiting from improvement in camera stock.
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