16 May 2011 | bkoganbing
A Man Of The South
Edmund MacDonald head of a trucking company and William Haade his chief henchman are making some big trouble for rancher Paul Harvey and his foreman Roy Rogers in Heart Of The Golden West. It seems as though the trucking company, the only shipping conveyance for their cattle is charging some exorbitant rates. Although Harvey is all for knuckling under Roy's a man of action. And I don't mean he's going to take this to the Interstate Commerce Commission.
Roy's scheme is to use a riverboat and ship his cattle to the stockyards by water. And he invites the steamboat owner Walter Catlett to sign the deal with Harvey. Of course MacDonald gets wind of it and therein lies the tale.
Heart Of The Golden West has a lot more comedy in it than the normal Roy Rogers westerns although they never lacked for it. Mainly because of Walter Catlett who plays a Senator Claghorn type owner of the steamboat who comes to town with daughter Ruth Terry who is Roy's romantic interest. MacDonald intercepts a telegram telling Roy that Catlett hates everything about the wild west even if it's not that wild any more. MacDonald will make sure it's wild and Catlett and his reactions to the situations are pretty funny. Running a close second is the perpetually exasperated Harvey.
And if that wasn't enough Roy gets two sidekicks in this film, Gabby Hayes and Smiley Burnette. The two of them in a horse costume with Catlett unwillingly on board is a riot unto itself.
The Hall Johnson Choir appears in Heart Of The Golden West singing some Negro spirituals which the Sons Of The Pioneers join in with Roy as a soloist. Makes for some nice cross cultural music.
Heart Of The Golden West, definitely one of Roy's better films and Catlett and Harvey are priceless.