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Hell-Fire Austin (1932)

Approved | | Action, Adventure, Western | 3 March 1932 (USA)
Heading west, Ken and Bouncer end up at the Brooks ranch where Ken is to ride Tarzan in the big race. But both the Sheriff and Edmonds are after him and he must hide both himself and the horse until race time.


Forrest Sheldon


Forrest Sheldon (story)




Complete credited cast:
Ken Maynard ... Ken 'Hell-Fire' Austin
Ivy Merton Ivy Merton ... Judy Brooks
Nat Pendleton ... Bouncer
Alan Roscoe ... Mark Edmonds
Jack Perrin ... Curley - Henchman
William Robyns William Robyns ... Hicks - Lawyer
C.V. Bussey C.V. Bussey ... Edmond's Henchman (as Fargo Bussey)
Lafe McKee ... Uncle Joe Brooks
Charles Le Moyne ... Sheriff (as Charles LeMoyne)
Tarzan Tarzan ... Tarzan - Judy's Horse


At the end of World War I, Bouncer, from the Bronx, follows his buddy Ken "Hell-Fire" Austin west, who boasts his name means something in the Great West, where life will be easy and trouble-free for them. Bouncer soon finds that the only person in the West who knows his buddy is himself and Austin. THey get tossed on the chain-gang for sixty days, for non-payment of their café bill, where Ken spots and becomes friends with a stallion, Tarzan, on the open range. The horse belongs to rancher Judy Brooks who hopes to race him in the Cactusville Sweepstakes in order to pay off a note held on her ranch by Mark Edmunds. Edmunds gets Ken freed from the two-man chain gang to train and ride his horse in the race but Ken learns that Edmunds has a scheme going to beat Judy out of her horse and the ranch. He quits Edmunds and takes on the task of riding Tarzan in the race, but has to keep himself and the horse hidden from the Sheriff and Edmund's henchmen. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Approved | See all certifications »






Release Date:

3 March 1932 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Alias Terremoto See more »

Filming Locations:

Lone Pine, California, USA See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Tiffany Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This film received its earliest documented telecast in Los Angeles Thursday 19 January 1950 on KNBH (Channel 4). See more »


My Buddy
Music by Walter Donaldson
Lyrics by Gus Kahn
Sung by Jack Kirk, Chuck Baldra and other soldiers
See more »

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User Reviews

Slapstick charm - Cheap western restrictions
8 February 2011 | by peapulationSee all my reviews

Hell Fire Austin can be considered a slapstick comedy as much as a western. The appeal of titular character and his streetwise Brooklyn friend is very much based on the Laurel and Hardy model, with the two guys not particularly enjoying each other's company though it has become essential, because it's better than being alone.

It's a curious little film. I have seen way too many cheap free domain westerns not to consider this different. From the very start you know this will at least be entertaining, and a times even look like a early spoof of the genre. Its start is actually a little surreal. A bunch of discharged soldiers, looking bored, almost look right at the camera and seem to be going 'now what do I do?'. And all of a sudden, Hell Fire Austin without warning comes into the scene, riding his horse with the film sped up, and well the film begins.

The plot is very simple - too simple. The two help a poor lady from having her horse stolen, and Hell Fire Austin wins a horserace with it. It moves slow and towards the end it's almost frustrating. But it's better than a lot of films like it, and has an original kind of charm.

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