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Old Oklahoma Plains (1952)

Approved | | Western | 25 July 1952 (USA)
One-time cavalry officer Rex Allen, between jobs as a star rodeo rider, is asked by his former commanding officer, Colonel Bigelow, to help settle a dispute between the army and local ... See full summary »

Director:

William Witney

Writers:

Albert DeMond (story), Milton Raison (screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Rex Allen ... Rex Allen
Koko ... Koko
Slim Pickens ... Slim
Elaine Edwards ... Terry Ramsey
Roy Barcroft ... Arthur Jensen
John Crawford ... Chuck Ramsey
Joel Marston ... Lt. Spike Connors
Russell Hicks ... Col. Charles Bigelow
Fred Graham ... Cameron - Henchman
Stephen Chase ... General William Parker
The Republic Rhythm Riders The Republic Rhythm Riders ... Cowhands / Musicians
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Storyline

One-time cavalry officer Rex Allen, between jobs as a star rodeo rider, is asked by his former commanding officer, Colonel Bigelow, to help settle a dispute between the army and local ranchers. The cavalry has commandeered a large parcel of land needed to test their newly-designed tank and prominent rancher Jenson has encited the locals to rebel at this intrusion. It is up to Rex and his sidekick, Slim, to thwart Jenson and convince the residents that these army tests are essential. Written by Chris Stone <jstone@bellatlantic.net>

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Genres:

Western

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Connections

Features Army Girl (1938) See more »

Soundtracks

The Lonesome Road
Traditional
Sung by Rex Allen with The Republic Rhythm Riders
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User Reviews

 
A county fair, a picnic, and a rodeo
25 September 2005 | by krorieSee all my reviews

One of my favorite characters of all times is Slim Pickens playing Maj. T.J. 'King' Kong in the biting Cold War satire "Dr. Strangelove." Who can forget Major Kong riding the bomb down as if riding a bucking bronco in a rodeo. Pickens, birth name Louis Bert Lindley Jr., was a real cowboy who knew how to ride, rope, and shoot with the best of them. He started making movies in 1950 and soon became Rex Allen's comical sidekick in a series of Republic westerns, some of the last Saturday matinée shoot-'em-ups ever made. To my surprise near the beginning of "Old Oklahoma Plains" I hear Slim say to Rex, "I've been to a county fair, a picnic, and a rodeo but this is the most fun I've ever had." Could it be that Stanley Kubrick told Slim to improvise dialog in "Dr. Strangelove" so he recalled this old line from the Rex Allen movie of 1952 and modified it to fit the new characterization? Could be. So for no other reason than to watch Slim Pickens in action "Old Oklahoma Plains" is worth seeing. Now about the title. The setting of the film looks a whole lot like southern California, not the hills and plains of Oklahoma. Oklahoma is not even mentioned in the movie as I recall, though Fort Houston is.

Singing cowboy from Arizona Rex Allen is the star of the show. He was a talented entertainer with an easy-going personality. His voice was pleasantly unique. So much so that Disney would later use him as narrator in several features. In "Old Oklahoma Plains" Rex sings three songs backed by the Republic Rhythm Riders. All three are traditional,"The Old Chisholm Trail," "Dem Bones," and "Lonesome Road." Even Slim joins in on "Dem Bones" and does a funny turn around when a lizard crawls up his leg.

Somewhat unusual for an oater, the time is 1926, several years after the Old West had become history. Changing times has improved technology to the extent that now a tank is threatening to eliminated the cavalry. Those with a vested interest in supplying horses for the army are on the defensive. The leader of the bad guys is the indomitable Roy Barcroft as Arthur Jensen who is willing to resort to murder to salvage his horse ranch. He stands to lose $l00,000 or more if the tank is successful. The army stages a race to see if the tank can outrun and out maneuver the cavalry. Since Rex is no longer in the cavalry, he and Slim watch and do not participate. This is how they see all the skulduggery.

The tank used in the film is more like one from a Rocket Man serial than one from the post-World War I era, sort of compact and pint-sized but highly maneuverable. Slim has a time and provides lots of laughs trying to drive the tank the way he would a car. Needless to say everything goes wrong and he runs over anything that gets in his way.

If you like Saturday matinée westerns with singing cowboys and comical sidekicks, you should enjoy "Old Oklahoma Plains." Plus Slim Pickens is always a joy to watch.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 July 1952 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Fantasma dos Prados See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Republic Pictures (I) See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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