Canyon River

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When a Wyoming rancher goes to Oregon to buy cattle, his foreman and a gang of town criminals plot together to steal the herd but the rancher’s cattle-drive hired hands are old convicts and rustlers themselves.  Killer land of West Wyoming !

ACTORS :  George Montgomery, Marcia Henderson, Peter Graves

YEAR OF RELEASE :  1956

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Canyon River  A Wyoming rancher and his foreman journey to Oregon to get breeding cattle in order to raise cattle that can withstand the harsh Wyoming winters. What the rancher doesn’t know is that he is the target of a plot to murder him and steal his cattle.

There are two things that just aren’t allowed on cattle drives: women and whiskey.

Canyon River (AKA: Cattle King) is directed by Harmon Jones and written by Daniel B. Ullman. It stars George Montgomery, Marcia Henderson, Peter Graves, Richard Eyer, Walter Sande, Robert J. Wilke and Alan Hale Jr. A CinemaScope/De Luxe Color production, music is by Marlin Skiles and cinematography by Ellsworth Fredricks.

Montgomery plays rancher Steve Patrick, who along with his mischievous foreman Bob Andrews (Graves), embarks on a lucrative cattle drive from East to West along the Oregon Trail. What Steve doesn’t know is that there are plans afoot to relieve him of everything.

Standard Oater this one but never boring and as a production it looks very nice indeed. The problem mainly is that it gets caught between two aims, it clearly wants to portray the harshness of a cattle drive and build suspense by way of back stabbing ideals and group dynamic pressures, but it never utilises the plot possibilities.

The set-up is fine, Steve Patrick is a top man, a guy you want on your side, but the only cattle hands he can raise for the job are outlaws and ruffians. Led by George Lynch (Hale Jr.) they are one of the most none threatening bunch of crims to grace a 50s Western! There’s some expected problems on the trail, but when the biggest gripe from the tough guys is that they have no meat to eat, you know that peril is in short supply. Canyon River

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