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  • Tom Tyler rides alone but for a good cause if he can keep undercover. Writer, comedy and drama actor Al Bridge has the gold if he can keep it. Things take a nice twist when stunning Adele Lacy comes on the scene. She is wishing to meet a real life bandit but be careful what you wish for. Look for a great fight scene with Tyler and Bridge when Dad Davis (Frank Ball) refuses to drink with the villain. Bob Burns, Alma Chester, Barney Furey and Edward Burns round out a wonderful cast. When a man rides alone he can and does meet some great character actors along the way.
  • Tom Tyler is a road agent who keeps sticking up gold shipments. He only takes the gold from Al Bridge's mine, which he then distributes to various individuals with strict accounting. It's clear he thinks Bridge has cheated them and is making amends. When he meets Bridge in a bar, Bridge doesn't know who he is, but they get into a wrangle. Bridge shoots Frank Ball, whose mine is next to his, and whose claim he is wrecking. Meanwhile, Ball's daughter, Adele Lacy is on the latest stage he holds up. When she sees his face, he takes her prisoner for a while.

    Although this short B western is edited at the slow pace that blighted the B movies at this time, there are several bright spots, including Miss Lacy's saucy, pre-code behavior, and some fine stunt work by Tyler. Like many Poverty Row westerns of the period, it seems to be underwritten and eked out by slow dialogue and overlong entrances, exits and riding sequences, but within that context seems to be full of zestful performances by Tyler, Bridge and Miss Lacy.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Not one of director J.P. McGowan's best movies nor one of his worst, this film provides a rare opportunity to see Adele Lacy (Mrs. Walter Futter in real life) in a decent role. Adele made her movie debut opposite Tom Tyler in Vanishing Men (1932). Then she was a Goldwyn Girl in The Kid from Spain, followed up opposite Lane Chandler in The Wyoming Whirlwind (1932), and finished the year off rejoining Tom Tyler in When a Man Rides Alone. Adele Lacy then became part of the scenery in four uncredited bits for major studios, ending with Fox's Redheads on Parade (1935). You'll note that she never made any movies for her producer husband. Becoming a star in Hollywood required more than good looks, talent, charisma and having the right connections. Contrary to popular wisdom, being in the right place at the right time is no guarantee of success. And although Lacy's forthright heroine makes quite a decent impression in When a Man Rides Alone, it's Tom Tyler's tricky Llano Kid and, to a lesser extent, villainous Al Bridge who dominate the movie and provide almost all of the action. Available on a very good Echo Bridge DVD.
  • Tom Tyler should have been a major star, with his looks and his ability, but his health prevented. But this role, at 10 years into his career, showed his looks, his athleticism, and his potential.

    He was surrounded by an excellent band of Western players, with that memorably voiced Al Bridge as the chief bad guy, and a charmer named Adele Lacy as the leading lady.

    She was cute, and in a couple scenes showed she could have been a bigger star, when she got to be winsome or flirty. Her usual roles were as uncredited dancer in such hits as "42nd Street."

    The plot here probably belongs to F. McGrew Willis, of whom I know nothing, but the screen adaptation was by the great Oliver Drake, and I expect he deserves most, if not all, the credit for the clever and entertaining lines.

    Most of the excellent cast members are not known today, but they were just about perfect as cowboys, deputies, henchmen, stage driver and guard, and really made this an enjoyable B Western.

    "When a Man Rides Alone" -- using an oft-told story in an unusual way -- is very well worth watching, and you can see it at YouTube. I hope you do.
  • Above average B western - curiously dedicated to men who ride alone! - has the excellent Tom Tyler as the Llano Kid, an outlaw (who isn't really of course) looking out for the underdogs and oppressed who have been cheated by smarmy villain, Montana Slade (Al Bridge).

    Adele Lacy, as heroine Ruth, the schoolmarm from "back East",flouts B western tradition by playing her part in a surprisingly vampish manner: presumably no-one explained the rules to her! One stunt I don't recall seeing previously involves hero Tom hiding in a tumbleweed and boarding the stagecoach, from beneath, when it trundles over him. Innovative stuff! There's also a good (for 1933) saloon fight between Tyler and Bridge, chairs and tables flying in all directions while the barflies urge them on.
  • Three years earlier than When A Man Rides Alone Gary Cooper played the Llano Kid in The Texan which sadly seems to be a lost film. Tom Tyler took over the role created by American short story writer O Henry where Tyler is a Robin Hood type bandit.

    He's moved into the territory of sheriff Bob Burns who seems real reluctant to go after him. That's because Tyler is robbing only stagecoaches that are carrying the gold shipments from mine owner Al Bridge who Burns has characterized as a 'buzzard'. This was before the Code and after 1934 you couldn't get away with his attitude as a law enforcement officer.

    Bridge who later became a member in good standing of Preston Sturges's unofficial stock company, is a Snidely Whiplash villain in the best tradition. After goading her father into a gunfight and killing him, Bridge starts looking on Adele Lacy with lascivious intent. Since Tyler is also interested in her, now he's got more than one reason to go after Bridge. The reason why he robs him in particular is the crux of the story which I won't give away.

    Why both these guys are interested in Lacy is obvious and then again not so obvious. She's one of the most airheaded of western heroines I've ever seen. She's also a schoolmarm and entrusting the education of the young in her hands strikes me as bizarre.

    Also for the life of me I can't figure out why Tyler made no effort to disguise himself during the robbery. Not even the traditional neckerchief mask over his face for Tyler.

    When A Man Rides Alone is a Robin Hood type story set in the west, but Robin Hood has seen better adaptions.
  • "When a Man Rides Alone" is a slow-moving and rather melodramatic Western. The story keeps the viewer's interest most of the time, but it's not an especially memorable film.

    Tom Tyler is the "Llano Kid", who specializes in robbing stagecoaches carrying gold from a particular mine. He doesn't keep the gold for himself, but gives it away, for reasons that become clear later on in the film. On one of his raids, a woman passenger insists on getting a look at him, so the kid captures her. Most of the characters are strictly stock Western figures, and things move along rather slowly until, at the end, it is all sorted out.

    None of it is particularly good or believable, but the plot doesn't work too badly as light entertainment.