King of the Pecos

1936

Western

0
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 43%
IMDb Rating 6.0 10 481

black and white

Plot summary


Uploaded by: FREEMAN
August 13, 2022 at 08:48 AM

Director

Top cast

John Wayne as John Clayborn
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
505.03 MB
1280*948
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
12 hr 54 min
P/S ...
937.45 MB
1458*1080
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
12 hr 54 min
P/S ...

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by classicsoncall 6 / 10

"Sounds like a polite case of cattle rustling to me."

From 1933 to 1935, John Wayne made a series of sixteen sagebrush yarns for Monogram Pictures under their Lone Star production unit. In 1935, Monogram along with Mascot, Consolidated Film Laborites and others merged into the Republic Pictures fold. Wayne, with producers Trem Carr and Paul Malvern moved over to Republic in the deal, and made another eight films there. Republic raised the bar ever so slightly over the Lone Star flicks, with bigger budgets and better production values. Better stories helped also, and "King of the Pecos" is an example.

I was lucky to catch the film this morning on AMC's all star Western weekend; I've never seen this movie available on tape or DVD. Set in 1870's Texas, it follows Wayne's character John Clayborn using the typical formula of a young boy growing up after his parents have been killed by the movie's villain, in this case, Cy Kendall as the land grabbing Alexander Stiles. Stiles' ploy is making claim on all the available water holes in his stretch of the Pecos River Valley, and granting settlers cattle which he buys back with worthless notes when they can't afford to pay for the water.

There's a neat scene where a lot of fuss is made over a newly designed safe Stiles brings in cross country. It's called a 'Salamander' - it can go through the hottest fire and never melt! Interestingly, Stiles is later referred to as Salamander by his henchmen a few times, which sort of works as he fancies himself immune to heat when the going gets tough.

Wayne's character makes a rather questionable transformation from a boy of about ten witnessing his parents' death, to a young man who's already a lawyer in the space of ten years. The math doesn't work, but that aside, Clayborn manages to hone his shooting skills along with his legal work to hang a shingle in the town of Cottonwood. There he collides with town boss Stiles and his gang in order to set things right for the local ranchers who've been swindled by the Salamander. Along the way, the territorial judge finds against Stiles, putting all but one of his water right claims back into the public domain.

One of Wayne's good friends from the Lone Star days is along for this ride, Yakima Canutt in a low key role as a Stiles henchman. The female lead is provided by Muriel Evans, a mainstay in a bunch of Buck Jones movies. There's also a comedic tandem using a slightly overdone hard of hearing gimmick who back up Wayne's play at each turn. It's worth mentioning too that John Wayne is often seen riding atop his trusty white horse, appropriately named 'Duke', though that name isn't mentioned in the story.

Speaking of horses, keep an eye on the team of white horses pulling Stiles' wagon as he attempts to make a getaway during the shootout near the end of the film. Just before the wagon breaks away, the lead horses take about the nastiest spill you'll ever see in any movie to this day. I'm always amazed at how they managed to film those scenes.

For anyone who hasn't sampled a range of Wayne's early work, "King of the Pecos" might come across as an uninspired Western, but if you've viewed his pictures from Columbia and Lone Star, you'll note the gradual progression of his skill, honed during the ten year span of the 1930's. Believe it or not, Wayne made just over fifty films during this period. Obviously the hard work paid off, and not just in terms of a future career. In the Lone Star flicks, Wayne's character usually got the girl at the end of the film, but here he winds up marrying her as well!

Reviewed by bkoganbing 5 / 10

The Duke at the Bar

King of the Pecos has a pre-Stagecoach John Wayne witnessing the murder of his parents by a no good land swindling dealer played by Cy Kendall. Of course he's a little kid at the time, but when he grows up he becomes a lawyer. But he's no ordinary lawyer, he can ride, and shoot, and fight with the best of them.

Kendall doesn't outrightly own a whole lot of the land he's swindled from folks. He just has phony options. Lawyer Wayne take him to court as well as deal with him in the usual John Wayne fashion.

This is far from the best western the Duke ever made, but it's pretty good for the B product he was stuck in at the time. And his legion of fans will love it.

Reviewed by morrisonhimself 9 / 10

High Joe Kane production values, great story, and, of course, the Duke

Iconic director Joseph Kane shows here why he is rated so highly by western and film aficionados. Republic (I like the sound of that word) and Kane and John Wayne are simply unbeatable.

In addition to a superlative story by Bernard McConville, an excellent cast and beautiful scenery create a nearly perfect western.

One bonus is the lovely Muriel Evans, one of the, in fact, loveliest heroines of B westerns in Republic's history. She showed, besides looks, a lot more personality than most of the B heroines.

When Turner Classic Movies showed, on 20 August 2015, a marathon of Mae Clarke movies, one of Ms. Clarke's premier performances came in a little-known film titled "Fast Workers." Muriel Evans had one scene, as a nurse, in which she mostly looked on, then had a few lines.

And in that small part, she didn't quite steal the movie, but sure did make an impression, with a fascinating performance.

She shows even more personality here, in "King of the Pecos," a fairly routine western, perhaps, but with such a sterling cast and superb directing and scenery that can and should make you want to pack your bags. Watch her in scenes where she might be only entering or leaving and you can't help admiring her presence and control.

She has an expressive face and eyes that enthrall.

John Wayne stands tall, demonstrates his personality that led him to be Hollywood's biggest star of all time, but isn't really stretched as an actor.

He is aided by two unknown but immensely talented character actors, playing "Josh" and "Hank," who do generally steal every scene they're in. And praise be, their humor is not the usual silly stuff so often found in B westerns.

The three chief bad guys are among the best in Hollywood history, Cy Kendall, Yakima Canutt, and Jack Clifford, of whom I blush to admit I know almost nothing -- except he is GREAT in this role.

There are several versions of "King of the Pecos" at YouTube and I picked the longest one. Don't you make that mistake. It's longer because whoever posted it tacked on several minutes of the ending twice.

It's a beautiful print, in brightness and contrast, but there are some strange technical glitches that cause the background to wave and wobble.

Still, the extraordinarily high quality of the production makes such stuff irrelevant. I highly recommend "King of the Pecos."

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