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Riders of the Rio Grande (1943)

A banker struggles to keep his bank solvent and his town from going bankrupt after the bank is robbed and all its money taken. The Three Mesquiteers ride into town and set out to help.


Howard Bretherton


Albert DeMond (original screenplay), William Colt MacDonald (based on characters created by)




Complete credited cast:
Bob Steele ... Tucson Smith
Tom Tyler ... Stony Brooke
Jimmie Dodd ... Lullaby Joslin
Lorraine Miller ... Janet Owens
Edward Van Sloan ... Pop Owens
Rick Vallin ... Tom Owens
Harry Worth ... Sam Skelly
Roy Barcroft ... Sarsaparilla Cherokee
Charles King ... Thumber Cherokee
Jack Ingram ... Henchman Berger
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Mayor Timothy "Pop" Owens (Edward Van Sloan) , also the highly respected town banker,has a problem. His useless son Tom (Rick Vallin) has aided henchmen of Sam Skelly (Harry Worth), a saloon owner , rob the bank in order to pay off Tom's gambling debts, and the bank examiners are coming in two days. "Pop" is facing imprisonment and disgrace and he decides to make the bank the beneficiary of a trust fund he created for his daughter, Janet (Lorraine Miller), and Tom, which will more than cover the stolen money. He then has Skelly hire a desperado to kill him. Skelly, never the one to under-staff a project, hires three ruthless outlaws, Sasaparilla Cherokee (Roy Barcroft), Thumber Cherokee (Charles King) and Butch Cherokee (Jack O'Shea). No one is faster on the draw than the Cherokee Brothers, except the Three Mesquiteers, Tucson Smith (Bob Steele), Story Brooke (Tom Tyler) and Lullaby Joslin (Jimmie Dodd) and they just happen to be in town. Stopping at a bar, they tangle with they ... Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


THE THREE MESQUITEERS in a RIP-ROARING ACTION THRILLER! original print ad-mostly caps)


Passed | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


[first lines]
[reading the plaque on a statue]
Older Boy: "Timothy Owens, Founder of Owensville"
Younger Boy: What does it mean "founded it"? Was it losted?
See more »


Follows Valley of Hunted Men (1942) See more »


I Got Those Wailin' in the Jailhouse Blues
Written by Jimmie Dodd
See more »

User Reviews

Edward Van Slaon last big role
8 November 2006 | by mmtoucanSee all my reviews

Edward von Sloane is the town's benevolent,paternalistic banker and he thankfully holds the dramatic center of this played-for-laughs final Three Mequiteers entry. So great in Universal horror movies, Dracula and The Mummy, this is his last big role. As the movie opens, we follow him through the main town street. The heroic trio doesn't appear until minute 13 of this 1 hour movie. Jimmie Dodd (of Mickey Mouse Club fame)is the most animated of the three and gets to invent a very clever jailhouse blues song that summarizes the plot. Western cult favorite Bob Steele gets to spar with his all-time favorite "dog heavy" punching bag, Charles King. King, despite being portly, was expert at faking fights. Steele, a small but brilliant fighter, was as a result, very popular in the 30s B westerns which otherwise often featured horrendously phony fisticuffs. Eventually, Steele's morose persona would be memorable in supporting roles, most notably, The Big Sleep. A chain-smoker, he died of emphysema. Sloane's banker character has two wayward offspring. Rick Vallin, the son, is familiar from late-era serials and 50s TV. The sole female character is played by beautiful Lorraine Miller, top-billed above Sloane. Ultra-dependable heavy Roy Barcroft is here at the very beginning of his lengthy Republic Studios tenure.

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Release Date:

21 May 1943 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Treis assoi tis fasarias See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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