Rawhide (1926)

Genres - Western  |  
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Years before he became a trusted house director at MGM, Richard Thorpe helmed low-budget Westerns for poverty row producer Lester F. Scott, Jr., including this vehicle for one of Scott's also-ran cowboys, Buffalo Bill, Jr. (aka Jay Wilsey). Buffalo played Rawhide Rawlins, a falsely accused fugitive from justice returning to the town of Paradise Hole after five years on the run. At the local saloon, Rawhide forcibly restrains town bully Blackie Croont (Charles "Slim" Whitaker) from assaulting blind Nell (Molly Malone), the house pianist. Still keeping his true identity a secret, Rawhide, with the help of town simpleton Two Gun (Harry Todd), gets the goods on the villain (Jose Rickson), who years earlier had framed him in the killing of a mining partner. At first, Nell assumes that Rawhide might have had something to do with the death of her father and sister. Realizing her mistake and that she loves Rawhide, Nan is miraculously cured of her blindness.