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Code of the Cactus (1939)

Approved | | Action, Western | 25 February 1939 (USA)
When Blackton outbids Bill Carson. Bill suspects he will have to rustle cattle to fulfill the contract. So Bill arrives posing as an Mexican. When he rustles the cattle from the rustlers, ... See full summary »

Director:

Sam Newfield

Writer:

Edward Halperin (original story and screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Tim McCoy ... 'Lightning' Bill Carson
Dorothy Short ... Joan
Ben Corbett ... Magpie
Ted Adams ... Thurston
Stephen Chase ... James (as Alden Chase)
Dave O'Brien ... Bob Swane
Forrest Taylor ... Blackton
Bob Terry ... Henchman Lefty
Slim Whitaker ... Sheriff Burton (as Slim Whittacker)
Frank Wayne Frank Wayne ... Henchman Jake
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Storyline

When Blackton outbids Bill Carson. Bill suspects he will have to rustle cattle to fulfill the contract. So Bill arrives posing as an Mexican. When he rustles the cattle from the rustlers, it gets him into the gang. Hoping to bring them all to justice, he is in trouble when his true identity is revealed. Written by Maurice VanAuken <mvanauken@a1access.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

AN ACTION THRILLER! (original print ad-all caps)

Genres:

Action | Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The earliest documented telecast of this film in the New York City area occurred Saturday 17 June 1944 on pioneer television station WNBT (Channel 1); in Philadelphia it first aired Thursday 18 August 1949 on Frontier Playhouse on WPTZ (Channel 3), and in Los Angeles Saturday 5 November 1949 on KFI (Channel 9). See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Lefty, gang truck driver: You know, Jake, back in Chicago I never thought I'd be punchin' cattle... mostly belongin' to other people.
Jake, gang truck shotgun: Yeah, usin' trucks for rustlin' is the latest thing.
See more »

Connections

Edited into Six Gun Theater: The Code of the Cactus (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

Across The Boundary Line
Written by Johnny Lange and Lew Porter
Sung by Art Davis
See more »

User Reviews

Fumbles A Novel Idea
18 July 2019 | by dougdoepkeSee all my reviews

I hate to be a dissenting voice, but at best this is a mediocre oater or should I say ten-wheeler. Director Newfield appears unconcerned with the staging-- for example, O'Brien's wounded in one shot and fully recovered in the next, then there's the awkward opening sequence that fails to plausibly combine the sequences. As a former front-row kid, my enjoyment of these matinees doesn't depend on their logic, but I hate to have my nose rubbed in it.

McCoy plays an eye-rolling Mexican hero with some amusing pidgin Spanish like "You'll see me later" instead of "Adios". He goes undercover in order to break up a rustling ring and find out who's in charge. At the same time, there's quite a bit of hard riding that doesn't always make sense. On the other hand, the freight truck rustlers amounts to a dramatic and novel idea that carries the hour. There's also a lot of fast shooting. Too bad, however, so few gunslingers seem to aim, especially Carson, who looks like he's "throwing" his gun and bullets instead of aiming, (thanks Newfield).

Too bad we don't see more of O'Brien and especially his then wife, the lovely Dorothy Short-- after all the ugly guys, we need a girl break. Anyway, except for the truck angle and Art Davis's delightful way with a western song, it's a forgettable oater.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 February 1939 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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