The Night Rider (1932) starring Harry Carey, Elinor Fair, George 'Gabby' Hayes, Julian Rivero directed by Fred C. Newmeyer Movie Review

The Night Rider (1932)   3/53/53/53/53/5

George 'Gabby' Hayes, Harry Carey and Julian Rivero in The Night Rider (1932)

Some Western Kit

With the outlaw known as the Night Rider causing trouble for the locals, Officer John Brown (Harry Carey) goes undercover as Jim Blake and finds work on the Rogers ranch when their foreman is killed by the Night Rider. Whilst going about his business he uncovers a secret passage which leads from the Rogers' home to the Rogers' Mine along with other evidence which suggests that the Night Rider might be linked to someone who works on the Rogers' ranch. But John has a plan to trap him, that is if no one suspects him off being the Night Rider himself.

I've mentioned it before but there are times when I wish I had been born earlier and as I watched "The Night Rider" I really wished I could have been a young boy back in 1932 who rushed to the picture house on a Saturday morning for their weekly slice of cowboy action. If I had been a young boy I would have enjoyed the easy going charm of Harry Carey playing the hero who was quick with the gun. I would also have enjoyed the comedy of Gabby Hayes and Julian Rivero who become his sidekicks, although Carey tosses in plenty of comedy of his own with lots of face pulling.

But the thing is that if I had been a young boy when "The Night Rider" came out I would have sat there and enjoyed the comedy, the heroics and action and walked away satisfied knowing that the good guy defeated the bad guy and got the girl unaware that she was half his age. But I wouldn't have been able to give you an exact plot and ironically more than 80 years after "The Night Rider" came out I still couldn't give you an exact plot because it is messy and often goes off on a tangent with scenes which seem only there to provide a laugh rather than tell the story. It is sadly what lets things down as if you were take out all the comedy and so on what is left is maybe a half hour western which is easier to follow.

What this all boils down to is that "The Night Rider" is likely to put a smile on the face of a western fan but more because of what passed for a western back in 1932 rather than for the story, the action or the acting.