Smoking Guns (1934)

Genres - Comedy, Western  |   Sub-Genres - Parody/Spoof  |   Run Time - 62 min.  |   Countries - United States   |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Synopsis by Hal Erickson

To say that Smoking Guns is one of Ken Maynard's strangest Westerns is understating the case. The film wastes no time getting started, with Ken Masters (Maynard) in mid-sentence accusing the villain (Harold Goodwin) of murdering Masters' father. Framed for murder himself, our hero is forced to escape to the swamplands of Louisiana, where he is pursued by lawman Dick (Walter Miller). Rescuing Dick from a pack of hungry alligators, Masters is forced to perform an emergency leg amputation, which, combined with a bad case of jungle fever, unfortunately results in the lawman's death. Astonished at the close resemblance between himself and Dick (the two men are actually about as similar as Abbott and Costello!), Masters decides to assume Dick's identity and return to the dead man's hometown. He manages to pull off his masquerade with everyone, even Dick's fiancee Alice (Gloria Shea), thereby giving himself free reign to finally trap the bad guys in a spooky old mansion. Decked out with a serpentine plotline that would do Erich Von Stroheim proud, Smoking Guns doesn't make much sense, but that's part of the fun -- as is the astonishing final shot, wherein the heroine's low-cut blouse threatens to slip from her shoulders as she and the hero ride off together.



bad-guy, father, good-guy, impersonation, kidnapping, outlaw [Western], rescue, suicide, Texas-Ranger