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Sunday, January 05, 2014

Another Roll Your Own 50's Western


George Montgomery Enters a Robbers' Roost (1955)

Westerns were always a great way for independents to start out, or recharge bank batteries. Leonard Goldstein, trade-known as a "money producer," had been, since '47, with Universal, then Fox, then back again, always with success (the Ma/Pa Kettles, Francis pics, numerous others --- there was one year where, according to Variety, Len turned out a record eighteen features for U-I). He left the majors to establish a firm with twin brother Robert Goldstein for Black Tuesday (an E.G. Robinson thriller I wish were available) and the outstanding Stranger On Horseback with Joel McCrea, these distributor-handled by United Artists. Leonard died sudden in 7/54 and brother Bob, with partner Robert L. Jacks, had to establish themselves over again with a new company moniker, Goldstein-Jacks Productions, from which Robbers' Roost emerged as a first offering. Westerns were a safe bet loaning institutions understood and UA stood ready to release. The deal maybe got more creative effort than the movie, but a Zane Grey story and good casting, plus color, puts Robbers' Roost across. George Montgomery was a dependable name, being now associated most with westerns. RR took $499K in domestic rentals, $464K foreign. Assuming it was made cheap (likely), there was presumed profit to carry on, which Goldstein did with another for UA, Dance With Me, Henry. Robbers' Roost is a comfort fit, no better/worse than a hundred saddles sat during the 50's, and shows up current on MGM's HD channel, where it looks stellar.

2 Comments:

Blogger radiotelefonia said...

BLACK TUESDAY is actually available; you can find it in eMule. Fernando Martín Peña and Fabio Manes presented in their show, Filmoteca, in a week devoted to films directed by Hugo Fregonese. It is a very well produced film although Edward G. Robinson´s fine performance is his already establish tough gangster persona and Jean Parker is still beautiful after 20 years on films. The film is tense but it is actually a partial remake of APENAS UN DELINCUENTE, Fregonese´s greatest film. BLACK TUESDAY is fine but it is very modest, has a rather routine plot and ends with a conventional climax. But the 1949 is one of the best movies ever produced and, although it can be seen complete in YouTube for free, it is not well known outside true film buffs and Argentine audiences.

10:31 AM  
Blogger James Corry said...

Composer Paul Dunlap wrote the music score to "Black Tuesday" and, though he generally hated the films he worked on, he always made two exceptions (at least in talking to me) and these were LIppert's "Lost Continent" and Fregonese's "Black Tuesday"....I would like to see a good print/source of this film someday, having only seen a ghastly copy of it. BTW, Paul also scored "Robber's Roost" and "Stranger On Horseback"....he did a lot of Westerns, but, in my opinion his best work was for the films noir that he did. "Loophole", "Fingerman" "Crime Of Passion" and others, and he spoke very highly of "Black Tuesday."

8:58 PM  

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