Rip Snorter (1925)

Genres - Western  |  
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Produced by prolific low-budget entrepreneur Benjamin F. Wilson, this minor silent western starred one of the era's less appealing screen cowboys, Dick Hatton. Film historian William K. Everson termed the Kentucky-born actor "a non-entity," and his few surviving films do nothing to dispute that statement. In this western, Hatton played Dick Meadows, a ranch hand goaded into riding the wildest horse on the spread, a stallion known as "Killer." Dick stays on the bronco longer than anyone before him and wins a sum of money from Willis (Robert Walker), the nasty foreman. On the way to the bank, however, Dick is waylaid by one of Willis' men but manages to get away. The foreman then kidnaps the rancher's daughter, Betty (Marilyn Mills), and sends his men to collect a minister. Betty's trained horse, Beverly, manages to get a message to Dick, who arrives just in time to prevent a shot gun wedding. During the ensuing free-for-all, Dick thrashes Willis while Betty, holding her own, nails a henchman with a chair. A well-known stunt-rider, Mills was married to poverty row producer J. Charles Davis and has been credited with discovering Gary Cooper. Unfortunately, she was all too often saddled with the pedestrian Dick Hatton as her leading man.