Big Stakes (1922)

Genres - Action, Western  |  
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In this extremely rare independently produced silent western, a Texan (J.B. Warner) falls for a below-the-border senorita (Elinor Fair) despite objections from a dashing Mexican (Robert H. Grey) and the plight of a hometown girl (Willie Mae Carson), whose purity is under threat from the leader of the local Ku Klux Klan. The "stakes" of the title refer to a Mexican jumping-bean competition, the outcome of which decides who shall win the senorita. The Texan, of course, is declared the victor, but, surprise!, the girl prefers her countryman, a solution to the problem that leaves our hero barely enough time to dash across the border and save the hometown girl from the clutches of the Klan leader (a leering Les Bates). The climax of this western -- blond Willie May Carson threatened by the hulking Bates atop a precipice -- resembles that of Birth Of a Nation (although somewhat in reverse), probably no coincidence considering the theme.

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Keywords

complications, cowboy, Mexico