5 April 2006 | jennyp-2
An entertaining western "inspired" by Calamity Jane
Calamity Jane, legendary figure of the old west, has been portrayed on screen by dozens of actresses from the silent era (Ethel Grey Terry in Wild Bill Hickock ) through the present (Robin Weigert in the HBO series Deadwood). Memorable Janes include Jean Arthur in The Plainsman (1936); Doris Day in Calamity Jane (1953); Jane Russell in The Paleface (1948) and Angelica Huston in the 1997 miniseries based on Larry McMurtry's brilliant novel Buffalo Girls. Not one of these movies came close to fact and Caught may be the furthest from the truth, but at least in this account, the robust middle-aged Louise Dresser looks the part. It seems Calamity runs a rough gambling joint and heads a gang of cattle rustlers on the side. The lovely Frances Dee plays a young innocent hired to work as a saloon girl. Richard Arlen as Lt. Colton arrives with his US cavalry troop to clean up the town and fall in love with Dee. But do Calamity and Colton have a past connection? Screened at Cinefest in Syracuse New York.