The fourth of five movie versions of the rugged Rex Beach novel of the same name, 1942's The Spoilers stars Marlene Dietrich, John Wayne, and Randolph Scott. The plot, involving the cheating of Alaskan gold rush prospectors by a crooked gold commissioner, requires that Scott play a villain, Alexander McNamara. Prospector Roy Glennister (Wayne) is continually persecuted by McNamara, who has the law on his side, until the two decide to settle their dispute man-to-man in a spectacular reel-long fistfight. La Dietrich plays saloon-hall gal Cherry Mallote, who becomes the romantic bone of contention between Glennister and McNamara. William Farnum, who played John Wayne's role in the original 1914 filmization of The Spoilers, plays a key supporting role in this remake; also on hand in a cameo is poet Robert W. Service, of The Shooting of Dan McGrew fame. Listen for a cute inside joke at the beginning of the picture, invoking the name of co-producer Lee Marcus.
by Hal Erickson synopsis