24 January 2012 | dougdoepke
A Couple of Compensations
An expert rider infiltrates a gang of rodeo crooks.
Reviewer boblipton's correct—this is a lesser matinée western. But it does have the great Bob Steele. He may be only 5'5'', however his short stature is pure bundled energy. Nobody in these oaters puts more vim and vigor into hard riding and choreographed brawls than Steele, and he makes audiences believe it. Both are on good display here. For Gibson, I expect the movie was above all a payday since he does little more than observe and comment. But then he is well into middle-age (52).
Boblipton's also right about the poorly blended stock footage. Still, for those who enjoy pageantry, it's fun watching all those vintage cowboys and Indians parade across the rodeo grounds from a time long ago when they were likely the real thing. Anyhow, I liked scoping out the winsome Beatrice Gray who is quite lively and charming. So, despite the poor production values and leaden script, there remain several compensating features.