5 October 2020 | MartinHafer
Among the worst of the Hopalong Cassidy films.
Generally, the Hopalong Cassidy B-westerns are among the best in the genre. They are almost always entertaining and well made....but there are a few exceptions. A HUGE exception is "Silent Conflict" and of the 40 or so films I've seen in the series, it and one other ("Outlaws of the Desert") , are the worst....terrible films due to ridiculous plots. In "Outlaws of the Desert", Hoppy and is pals hang out in Saudi Arabia! And, here in "Silent Conflict", one of his pals is controlled by an evil hypnotist!!! Evil hypnotists and Saudi Arabia clearly have no part in an American western...and they really are dumb films!
When the story begins, Hoppy, Lucky and California are bringing in some cattle to sell. Lucky is acting out of sorts...but Hoppy assumes he'll soon snap out of it. Another man, the 'Doc', also sees that Lucky is out of sorts and takes what appears to be a fatherly interest in the guy. Instead, however, he used mind-altering drugs and hypnosis to turn Lucky into his evil pawn!!!! Then, he gets Lucky to steal all the money from the cattle sale!! Not surprisingly, Hoppy and California give chase....and the trail leads to Doc...and a final showdown.
Hypnosis?! Give me a break. First, hypnosis cannot make you do what happens in the film. I am a trained hypnotist...and if it could turn people into your evil pawns, I would have used it for this decades ago!! Second, if I didn't know better, I'd swear that the series had 'jumped the shark' with such a stupid and ridiculous plot! But "Borrowed Trouble" was also made in 1948 and is a dandy and very enjoyable Cassidy film. All in all, a terrible film compared to the others in the series and evidence that the writing wasn't always stellar in the series.