Overland Mail (1939)

Genres - Action, Western  |   Run Time - 51 min.  |   Countries - USA  |  
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Robert Emmett Tansey, production supervisor and head writer on Monogram's Jack Randall Westerns, had the gall this time around to outright plagiarize John Ford's newly released Stagecoach (1939). Like John Wayne in Ford's masterpiece, Jack Randall found himself boarding a stagecoach after having his horse shot out from under him. The coach is already occupied by Mary, a saloon belle (Jean Joyce, aka Claire Rochelle), a whiskey salesman (George Cleveland), and Duke (Dennis Moore), an outlaw. By the time Jack and the passengers arrive in town, Tansey mercifully stops imitating Ford long enough to craft a none too spectacular story of Randall attempting to persuade Miss Joyce from working for Polini (Tristram Coffin, sporting the worst "foreign" accent this side of Buck Jones), whom he suspects of heading a counterfeiting ring. As it turns out, both Mary and the whiskey salesman are undercover agents and the greedy Polini is turned over to a gang of Indians, one of whom he once murdered. No one apparently complained about Tansey plagiarizing John Ford (not to mention screenwriter Dudley Nichols) and Overland Mail was dismissed as just another low-budget Western released on the lower half of double bills.

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Keywords

bad-guy, counterfeit, cowboy, disguise, federal-agent, good-guy, mail, Pony-Express