The Plainsman – 1936 – English
Film directed in 1936 by Cecil B. DeMille, and starring Gary Cooper, Jean Arthur, James Ellison, Charles Bickford, Helen Burgess, Porter Hall, Paul Harvey, Victor Varconi, John Miljan, Frank McGlynn Sr., Granville Bates, Frank Albertson, Purnell Pratt, Fred Kohler, Pat Moriarity, Anthony Quinn, Dennis O’Keefe…
Synopsis: Wild Bill Hickok enlists the help of his friend Buffalo Bill Cody (named for having killed more than 4,000 bison) to try to stop the uprising of the Indian tribes in the Wild West and capture the renegade who sells them weapons. Calamity Jane, in love with Bill Hickok will join them … Wild Bill will try to stop an Indian uprising incited by white arms dealers.
Review: Sure The Plainsman is not historically accurate but it is great entertainment. Most DeMille pictures especially the later epics are slow and plodding but the action here moves at a clip.
The story is basically a series of peaks with very little quiet moments. The action takes us from an Indian raid on a cabin; one of the best parts of the movie with Jean Arthur excellent while attempting to appease the war-painted natives. This is followed by her and Cooper being taken to the war camp and being tortured. Later comes a protracted battle with the Cheyenne. The whole thing is ridiculous but great fun and entertaining from start to finish. Jean Arthur is one of the best actresses of this era and she shines here.