Wednesday, December 13

The Over-The-Hill-Gang Rides Again

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A year after The Over-the-Hill-Gang had a successful outing on television, a sequel aired that was called The Over-the-Hill-Gang Rides Again.  This 1970 film reunited Walter Brennan, Chill Wills, Andy Devine, and Edgar Buchanan and then added to the mix, Fred Astaire.

In the original movie, this group of Texas Rangers come together to help out their old squadron leader, but in this outing, they go to assist a fellow ranger, played by Astaire.

I always felt Astaire was oddly placed in this movie.  He does a fine job as the Baltimore Kid, but to me, he doesn’t fit with that old timer character actor that the other stars do.  That’s the appeal of the movie, seeing Brennan, Buchanan, and Wills especially, in action, not just sitting around.  Astaire was in the right age group, but he wasn’t a western star and just stood out as the insect in a group of dinosaurs.

The plot of this movie paled to the original as well.  Here, the Baltimore Kid needs to live down his legend, and that was okay, but it just didn’t thrill me as much as Rick Nelson being the crusading newspaper editor in the first one.

However, it’s still a good enough movie to watch, and it’s a great chance to see these character veterans work together.

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