HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Steel and Lace
Reivers, The
Angel Has Fallen
I Lost My Body
At First Light
Free Ride
Crawl
Transit
Blank Check
Mad Monk, The
Wind, The
Holly and the Ivy, The
Atlantique
Now, Voyager
Wolf's Call, The
Nostalghia
Nightingale, The
Eighth Grade
Irishman, The
Betrayed
Lords of Chaos
Operation Petticoat
Dead Don't Die, The
On the Waterfront
Last Faust, The
Moonlighting
Art of Self-Defense, The
Ironweed
Booksmart
Prisoners
Beach Bum, The
Kill Ben Lyk
Into the Mirror
Support the Girls
Werewolf
Little Monsters
Spider-Man: Far from Home
Horrible Histories: The Movie - Rotten Romans
Pentathlon
Anna
   
 
Newest Articles
Memories Are Made of This: La Jetee and Sans Soleil on Blu-ray
Step Back in Time: The Amazing Mr. Blunden on Blu-ray
Crazy Cats and Kittens: What's New Pussycat on Blu-ray
No Place Like Home Guard: Dad's Army - The Lost Episodes on Blu-ray
A Real-Life Pixie: A Tribute to Michael J. Pollard in Four Roles
We're All In This Together: The Halfway House on Blu-ray
Please Yourselves: Frankie Howerd and The House in Nightmare Park on Blu-ray
Cleesed Off: Clockwise on Blu-ray
Sorry I Missed You: Les Demoiselles de Rochefort on Blu-ray
Silliest of the Silly: Monty Python's Flying Circus Series 1 on Blu-ray
Protest Songs: Hair on Blu-ray
Peak 80s Schwarzenegger: The Running Man and Red Heat
Rock On: That'll Be the Day and Stardust on Blu-ray
Growing Up in Public: 7-63 Up on Blu-ray
Learn Your Craft: Legend of the Witches and Secret Rites on Blu-ray
70s Psycho-Thrillers! And Soon the Darkness and Fright on Blu-ray
Split: Stephen King and George A. Romero's The Dark Half on Blu-ray
Disney Post-Walt: Three Gamechangers
But Doctor, I Am Pagliacci: Tony Hancock's The Rebel and The Punch and Judy Man on Blu-ray
Once Upon a Time in Deadwood: Interview with Director Rene Perez
Shit-Eating Grim: Salo, or the 120 Days of Sodom on Blu-ray
Stallone's 80s Action Alpha and Omega: Nighthawks and Lock Up
Python Prehistory: At Last the 1948 Show and Do Not Adjust Your Set on DVD
You Could Grow to Love This Place: Local Hero on Blu-ray
Anglo-American: Joseph Losey Blu-ray Double Bill - The Criminal and The Go-Between
   
 
  Along Came Jones Saddle soreBuy this film here.
Year: 1945
Director: Stuart Heisler
Stars: Gary Cooper, Loretta Young, William Demarest, Dan Duryea, Frank Sully, Don Costello, Walter Sande, Russell Simpson, Arthur Loft, Willard Robertson, Ray Teal, Lane Chandler
Genre: Western, Comedy, Romance
Rating:  8 (from 1 vote)
Review: Riding into Payneville, easy-going cowboy Melody Jones (Gary Cooper) is mighty perplexed as to why everyone in town seems scared of him. When beautiful Cherry de Longpre (Loretta Young) saves Melody and his crusty old sidekick George (William Demarest) she explains he has been mistaken for a violent outlaw named Monte Jarrad. The real Jarrad (Dan Duryea) is recuperating from a gunshot wound at Cherry's ranch after robbing a stagecoach. Cherry tries to sneak Melody out of town, partly to save his life but also draw the posse off her boyfriend Monte's trail. Melody however is too taken with Cherry to ride away. Seizing his chance to be a hero he tangles with both the law and Monte's gang, leading to an inevitable showdown.

The only film produced by star Gary Cooper, Along Came Jones is a quirky serio-comic western that presents the iconic leading man in a different light. Though still very much the hero, Melody is a far cry from the stoic, taciturn figures Cooper portrayed in most of his westerns. He is essentially a lovable doofus. Comically inept with a gun, albeit quick-witted, Melody bumbles into then bluffs his way out of one sticky situation after another, relying largely on sheer bravado, dumb luck or else the timely intervention of Loretta Young's delightfully feisty heroine. Prolific screenwriter and occasional director Nunnally Johnson, who retains a possessory credit in the opening titles even though the film is based on a novel by Alan Le May, spins a charming yarn in which the hero more or less tries to act like Gary Cooper. Drunk on love along with his first real flush of danger, Melody tries to live up to a heroic ideal allowing Cooper to spoof his own image. A priceless scene early on has him lecture George about the proper way to swagger in and make an immediate impression on the townsfolk.

With its wordplay laden dialogue, folksy mid-western humour, eccentric characters and occasional jarring detours into straight violence, Along Came Jones plays somewhat like a precursor to a Coen Brothers film. It tells a far simpler story but one well handled throughout. Right from the first few scenes Stuart Heisler establishes a deft mix of comedy and suspense then sustains the delicate balance throughout, allowing both elements to feed each other. Fluid camera-work and evocative lighting make the most of a sparse production but the key elements remain Johnson's wittily sweet-natured script and the performances. Cooper is at his most amiable, striking romantic sparks with Young in a surprisingly affecting love story. An especially charming touch has Melody, who is not quite as dumb as he seems, see through each of Cherry's contrived sob stories only to play along anyway out of love. Delivering a nuanced turn as the heroine with a pleasingly broad character arc, Young emphasizes Cherry's brains, bravery and resolve without neglecting her vulnerability as she grows to realize Monte Jarrad is no longer the man she loved.

Deceptively straightforward, Along Came Jones is full of subtly oddball or disorientating moments. Such as the stubbornly reoccurring calamities that keep stranding Melody and Cherry in the same bullet-ridden shack. Or a tense confrontation that plays out while hero and villain disrobe in front of each other. It ends with a surprisingly brutal showdown that has Melody momentarily uncertain as to whose side Cherry is really on. Although the film remains upbeat throughout the hero pays a price for chasing his ambitions towards machismo and the message seems to be happy domesticity is a much saner alternative. Even in the wild untamed west. Along the way Gary Cooper performs the song "I'm a Lonesome Cowboy" that later became the signature tune of French comic book hero Lucky Luke.

Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam

 

This review has been viewed 653 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Enoch Sneed
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
  Rachel Franke
Paul Shrimpton
  Desbris M
   

 

Last Updated: