29 April 2004 | halhorn
Baer's debut as director is proposterous but entertaining
I had no idea that men were wearing their hair long in 1949, or that a Texas Catholic family would still have enough southern pride to hang a confederate flag in the den, or that William Demarest still thought that stupid red wig was fooling people in 1975.
Inconsistencies and anachronisms aside, Max Baer's debut as director (he was screenwriter/producer/star only on MACON COUNTY LINE) is a fun little low-budget flick, a family melodrama with the same pacifist leanings he expressed in MACON COUNTY LINE.
Forrest Tucker is at his blustery best as a two-fisted Texas millionaire, a self-made man who began as a trucker but fought his way to the top, eventually owning his own trucking company and putting his name on everything in the county. Max Baer plays his employee and nemesis, for he is dating Tucker's teenage daughter.
Baer's hairstyle is the single most glaring anachronism. The odd mix of 1950s and 1970s fashions is straight out of middle-year HAPPY DAYS.
The best sequence is the terrific fight that closes the film, as Tucker and Baer duke it out in a long sequence that apparently the entire town has been expecting for quite some time!
The primary joy is the opportunity to watch a lot of old pros really put on a show: in addition to Tucker and Demarest, we get Vito Scotti, Harold J. Stone, Don Grady, Julie Adams, Billy Curtis and Mike Mazurki rounding out a great cast. Easy to watch and easy to forget. 6/10.