(Review originally written at 1 September 2008)

The movie has some really colorful characters, which really makes the movie. Not just the two main characters, played by Marlene Dietrich and James Stewart but more in particular the secondary characters. The characters feel fresh and original, despite being very stereotyped and they provide the movie with most of its fun.

Basically the movie is one great and effective western-comedy, without really ridiculing the western genre. There aren't really that many western-comedies around and of course "Blazing Saddles" is the only movie that first springs to mind. The movie is foremost a comedy, that just happens to be set in America during the 19th century. It also features all of the usual typical western genre elements, such as bar fight, card games, lethal ladies and gunslingers.

It's a real skillfully directed genre movie. Director George Marsall handled the comedy really well and there is a great balance between the more physical humor and the written comedy with its great dialog.

The movie of course also gets made very lively due to its acting performances. James Stewart surely was one fine actor and he is great in his role in this movie. Marlene Dietrich plays a type of character she always played best.

It also on top of that features a great written story that all times remain interesting, despite not having too much action or anything like that in it. It's the type of story that simply amuses without being really too (needlessly) complicated written. It keeps the movie simple but always effective. In it all there also is of course room for some romance between the Dietrich and Stewart character but it's (luckily) not the key element of the movie though. There also is a small amount of drama, so there basically is something for everybody to enjoy in this movie.

This movie in return is a remake of the 1932 movie with the same title, starring genre veteran Tom Nix in the James Stewart role. This movie still remains mostly unknown and also isn't widely available. One more remake of the movie got made in 1954 under the simple title "Destry", which also got directed by George Marshall, who is also the director of this movie version. In 1964 there also was a short lived TV series, with the son of Tom Destry as its central character.

A good movie to watch!


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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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