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At the U.T.

By A. Y.

As straightforward-not to say, brutally frank-as its title, "The Westerner" sticks up to its neck in the woolly, daredevil days of the frontier. The location is Texas, the center of action Judge Roy Bean's "court," a decrepit saloon in which justice flows as freely as the "rub of the brush." The time is the 1860's, and the homesteaders and cattleraisers are busily warring for Lebensraum, giving Sam Goldwyn the chance of his life to shoot some gruesome pictures of burning homes and fields.

"The Westerner" is conventional, but so noisily and wholeheartedly as to be outright refreshing. Walter Brennan's superb acting as "The Law West of the Pecos" lends an undercurrent of profundity to all the merry, Western violence. The plot between the shootings is supplied by the Judge's incognito love for Lily Langtree, the actress, and by the romance between a handsome saddlebum (Gray Cooper) and a homesteader's daughter (Doris Davenport, unfortunately). From character play and comedy the picture finally sinks into old fashioned melodrama, and ends up on a note of social significance to remind you that everything was only the Western Movement after all.

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