Wyoming Outlaw With himself and his father out of work due to Balsinger who controls the jobs, Will Parker is stealing cattle to feed his family. The Mesquiteers try to help him out but he is caught and jailed. Escaping jail and eluding the ensuing manhunt, he heads for Balsinger and a showdown. The Mesquiteers, daredevil riders of the plains, try a desperate plan to break up a menacing crime syndicate.
This Mesquiteer film is set in the modern west of the dustbowl and has some themes that John Wayne later used in McLintock. During the World War, the cattle country was converted to wheat and after the demand from Europe subsided after World War I a lot of farm land was left arid and abandoned. That is exactly what happened to American agriculture in the boom period of the Roaring Twenties where the farmers did not share the prosperity.
Along comes the New Deal and a lot of local political bosses took advantage of government relief programs to entrench themselves in power. Such a boss is played by LeRoy Mason who was one of the shrewdest villains I’ve ever seen in a western. In fact during the course of the film, Mason really outsmarts our heroes at every turn as they try to bring him down legally.
Anyway though the Mesquiteers are really subordinate to Red Barry who’s tired of having his family exploited by Mason and his gang. Circumstances make him turn outlaw and the chase for him is reminiscent of High Sierra a year later. In fact the just as Humphrey Bogart is referred to as Mad Dog Earle, Barry is called Mad Dog Parker by the radio and print media of the time.
High Sierra was an A film for Warner Brothers and this was just a quickie B western that probably didn’t get too much notice. It’s a pity that the production values were those of a B film because the story was very well done.