Watch Rollin' Plains
- 57 min
"Rollin' Plains" is a 1938 black-and-white Western musical movie starring Tex Ritter, a famous singing cowboy of the 1930s and 1940s. The film is also notable for featuring Tex's horse, White Flash, and veteran actor Karl Hackett among its cast. "Rollin' Plains" is a product of its era, exemplifying the Western genre's golden age when Hollywood frequently churned out tales of rugged cowboys, lawless outlaws, and picturesque landscapes, often incorporating elements of romance and musical breaks.
In "Rollin' Plains," Tex Ritter portrays himself as a good-hearted, singing cowboy hero. The film opens as Tex travels along the rolling plains with his loyal stallion, White Flash, never far from his side. White Flash is not just an ordinary horse, but almost a character in his own right, sharing a remarkable bond with Tex and sometimes getting involved in the action and plot in humorous or crucial ways.
Tex, known for his strong sense of justice and impressive gun-slinging skills, finds himself embroiled in a conflict that threatens the peace of a local community. The plains, which should be a place for honest work and harmonious living, are endangered by the presence of rustlers and outlaws, who prey upon unsuspecting ranchers and disrupt the tranquility of the land.
Karl Hackett plays an antagonist role as the leader of a gang of nefarious cattle thieves who aims to take control of the region. Unlike many black-and-white villains, his character is not just a two-dimensional evildoer but has layers that complicate the moral landscape of the film.
Tex's arrival in town is a catalyst for change. The locals, including a diverse cast of side characters such as ranchers, barmaids, blacksmiths, and lawmen, are initially wary of the stranger. Tex, however, quickly endears himself to the townspeople through acts of bravery, his quick wit, and his ability to diffuse tension with a song.
Music plays a central role in "Rollin' Plains," as it does in many of Tex Ritter's films. Tex performs a variety of songs, perhaps the most memorable being the title track which captures the spirit of the open range and the hearts of those who live there. His deep, resonant voice imbues the film with a sense of authenticity and provides a cultural snapshot of the era's popular music styles. The songs range in topic from love and loss to the simple joys of life as a cowboy, and they punctuate the narrative, giving the audience a chance to bask in Tex's musical talents while also advancing the plot and character development.
The female lead, although not named in the request, typically adds a touch of romance and grace to the rugged Western setting. She often represents the struggles of the homesteaders and plays a crucial role in motivating Tex to take a stand against the injustices they face. Her character is more than just a love interest; she's usually a strong, independent woman who isn't afraid to get her hands dirty or speak her mind—a common trope seen in the era's Western films.
In true Western fashion, the narrative of "Rollin' Plains" unfolds amidst a backdrop of saloons, shootouts, and horseback chases. The action sequences are crafted to keep audiences on the edge of their seats, showcasing Tex's skills with both a six-shooter and a lariat. These scenes are tightly edited and carefully choreographed to maintain a brisk pace and uphold the film's energy.
The drama in "Rollin' Plains" is balanced with moments of light-hearted comedy, often manifesting through side characters who find themselves in over-the-top situations or through the clever banter between Tex and his acquaintances. This humor serves to relieve tension at critical points and endears the audience to the characters.
Visually, "Rollin' Plains" offers stunning shots of the landscape that was the living, breathing embodiment of the Western genre. The cinematography captures the vastness and beauty of the plains, along with the iconic imagery of the 'Wild West': endless skies, distant mountains, and the untamed nature that was both a friend and foe to settlers.
As with many Westerns, "Rollin' Plains" delves into themes of honor, camaraderie, and the relentless pursuit of justice. Tex's character is often a moral compass, standing firm against corruption and rallying others to do the same. It's a tale of good triumphing over evil, of community standing together against outside forces, and of the individual acts of heroism that shape the mythos of the Old West.
For aficionados of vintage Westerns or fans of Tex Ritter's distinctive style, "Rollin' Plains" is emblematic of an era where heroes wore cowboy hats, villains met poetic justice, and the songs of the West were as vast and enduring as the plains themselves.
Rollin' Plains is a 1938 action movie with a runtime of 57 minutes. It has received mostly poor reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 4.5.