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The Arizonian

(1935 b 76')

En: 5 Ed: 6

Dudley Nichols wrote the screenplay based on his novel The Peacemaker about a man who brings law and order to a town with an outlaw for a sheriff.

Kitty Rivers (Margot Grahame) sings "Roll Along." Orin Tallant (James Bush) loves Kitty but is told to leave town. Instead Kitty gets on the stage. Sheriff Jake Mannen (Louis Calhern) sends masked men to bring her back; but Clay Tallant (Richard Dix) stops them. Kitty goes back to Silver City with him. The stage goes on and is robbed by Tex Randolph (Preston Foster). Clay reports that Frank McClosky (Ray Mayer) and a gang held up the stage, but he learns the sheriff won't arrest them. Marshal Andy (J. Farrell MacDonald) arrests McClosky; but McClosky shoots him. Mayor Ed Comstock (Francis Ford) gives Clay a star and tells him to arrest Keeler (Joe Sawyer) for murder. In court Mannen charges Keeler with disturbing the peace, and Judge Cody fines him $25. When his younger brother Orin tells him about sheriff Mannen, Clay decides to keep the badge. He gets an ordinance against carrying guns except by law officers. Tex tosses drinks in men's faces; but Clay drinks with him and tells him to check his gun. Kitty dances with Orin and then with Clay. Orin tells Clay he wants to marry Kitty.

While Mannen is out of town, his men shoot up the saloon and take Clay's guns; but Tex gives Clay a gun, and Clay arrests the men. Judge Cody fines them $10 for shooting guns, saying the new ordinance is unenforceable. He fines Tex $50, and Clay pays it. Tex is made a deputy marshal. Clay goes after McClosky while Tex stays in town. Mannen's posse returns, saying McClosky is gone; but Clay brings in McClosky, whom Mannen locks up. Mannen arrests Tex for robbing the stage; but Clay stops it. Clay and Keeler fight in the backroom.

Kitty tells Clay she is breaking up with Orin; but Clay will not hurt his brother. Kitty loves Clay; he kisses her, and Orin sees it. Orin packs. Mannen gives men guns and McClosky too, saying he is being sent to Yuma to avoid a lynching. The comic relief is Sarah (Etta McDaniel) trying to get Pompey (Willie Best) to marry her. Clay is shot by an ambush. Tex shoots one of them, and Orin shoots McClosky. Mannen arrests Clay, Tex, and Orin for shooting his deputy. Ed lets them keep their guns, and he keeps the jail key. Mannen fears an inquiry, and Keeler suggests burning the place. Amid smoke Mannen leaves and shoots Pompey. Men get horses to pull the jail bars out. Clay, Tex, and Orin face seven men, shooting in the smoke. All the men lay dead except Clay. Mannen is about to shoot him when Sarah shoots Mannen. After the funerals Clay and Kitty go to California with Sarah.

This story shows how difficult it can be to disarm lawless men when some of them are in authority. Many are killed before law is restored.

Copyright © 2000 by Sanderson Beck

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