The Savage Horde (1950)

Passed   |    |  Western

The Savage Horde (1950) Poster

On the run from the U.S. Army, Ringo ends up in a small Utah town where he takes sides in a land feud between local ranchers but he always keeps an eye out for the Army patrols closing-in on him.


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29 December 2012 | bkoganbing
| Rides into a range feud
Wild Bill Elliott whose later westerns for Republic were pretty good does another fine one in The Savage Horde. He plays one of two brothers, a gunfighter named Ringo who shot an army captain and the army in the person of Colonel Douglass Dumbrille wants him. And charged with bringing him in is Lieutenant Jim Davis who is Elliott's younger brother.

Escaping the army's clutches, Elliott arrives in the town of Gunlock which is in the midst of a range war started by the local Ponderosa owner Grant Withers who's backed by his tough foreman Roy Barcroft and a murderous gunslinger in Bob Steele. He's also got the local judge Will Wright in his pocket and he's courting Wright's daughter Barbara Fuller who is also being courted by young Noah Beery, Jr., the leader of the small ranchers. Seems that Withers thinks that government land and open range are his exclusively.

Naturally Elliott sides with the little guys, but he's a fugitive and of course that is always in the back of his mind. But even fugitives are entitled to some romance and he has it with hash house owner Lorna Gray.

As you can see there are a lot of plot elements, but they're woven nicely into a tight no frills story that doesn't waste a minute of film frame. Pay attention to Wright as a troubled figure and Withers who is a bit more complex than most standard B western villains are.

Most of all there's Bob Steele who in my book was always better as a villain than a cowboy hero. His gunslinger Dancer ranks right up there with the villain roles he did in The Big Sleep, The Enforcer and South Of St. Louis. He's one murderous punk in this one.

I would strongly urge anyone who is a western fan to check out this and other westerns done by Bill Elliott after he stopped being Red Ryder.

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