Rounding up the Law (1922)

Genres - Western  |   Sub-Genres - B-Western  |   Run Time - 62 min.  |  
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Produced, directed and photographed by Charles R. Seeling, Rounding Up the Law remains one of the very few extant Westerns from Guinn "Big Boy" Williams' silent starring career. The future sidekick/supporting player is Larry Connell, a drifter who wins a ranch in a poker game against "Branch" Doughty (J. Russell Gordon), a gambler turned quarantine inspector for the Cattlemen's Association. With assistance from crooked Sheriff "Bull" Weyman (Chet Ryan), Doughty "persuades" weak Judge Hyland (William McCall) to have Larry declared bankrupt. When Weyman sells Larry's cattle, our once law-abiding citizen, takes matters into his own hands, eventually saving the judge's pretty daughter Doris (Patricia Palmer) from the evil Doughty. Produced on a shoestring (a climactic hold-up takes place in a very small tent!) on drabbest location possible, Rounding Up the Law is typical of the kind of cheap Western fare that would give the genre a bad name by the middle of the decade. It is, however, also one of the very few surviving films of Patricia Palmer. Formerly known as Margaret Gibson and highly advertised in the mid-1910s, Miss Palmer was a troubled personality who had several run-ins with the law and was at one point even arrested for prostitution, a situation that demanded the change of name. When her film career ended at the advent of sound, Palmer earned a final flurry of publicity by "confessing" to the 1922 murder of film director William Desmond Taylor.