Best Western Movies of 1914
The Spoilers is a 1914 film directed by Colin Campbell. It is set in Nome, Alaska during the 1898 Gold Rush, with William Farnum as Roy Glennister, Kathlyn Williams as Cherry Malotte, and Tom Santschi as Alex McNamara. The film culminates in a spectacular saloon fistfight between Glennister and McNamara. It was adapted to screen by Lanier Bartlett from the Rex Beach novel of the same name.
Ammunition Smuggling on the Mexican Border: Incidents of the Mexican Revolution
Around the film hang fascinating questions about border politics, which I’ll touch on in an introduction before the screening. One of Eugene Buck’s motivations for making the film may have been his rough cross-examination during his kidnappers’ first trials, in October 1913, when defense attorneys cast him as a confused and unreliable witness against idealistic freedom fighters. On film he could reproduce the pursuit, the shootouts, his kidnapping, and his friend’s murder just as he had testified. Reenacting the crime on film may have been the best revenge—and a way to honor the sacrifice of Deputy Ortiz, a twenty-year police veteran and, for the era, a rare Mexican American lawman.
After the bandit Jim Stokes robs the stage he is wounded fleeing. Recuperating at a ranch, he falls in love with and marries the daughter. Now wishing to go straight he tries to return the money but is recognized and captured. When the Sheriff then loses the recovered money at a crooked roulette table, he and Stokes strike a bargain.
The Squaw Man
Blamed for the theft of an orphans fund, Captain James Wynnegate flees to the West where he makes a new life with the Indian woman Nat-U-Rich.
A good-natured but chivalrous cowboy romances the local schoolmarm and leads the posse that brings a gang of rustlers, which includes his best friend, to justice.
By the Sun's Rays
The earliest surviving film featuring Lon Chaney in a major role, By the Sun's Ray's was but one of several 2-reel westerns starring the florid Murdock MacQuarrie. MacQuarrie plays a detective investigating a series of gold shipment robberies. Along the way, he falls for a mine superintendent's pretty daughter (Agnes Vernon), much to the dismay of a sullen mine office clerk (Chaney), who is also smitten with the girl...
When beautiful Salomy Jane resists the romantic advances of a young ruffian, she is rescued by Jack Dart, who has his own additional reasons for tangling with the man. Jack fights the ruffian and kills him. He escapes with the law on his trail, for it is (wrongly) presumed that he is also the man who held up the stagecoach. Salomy Jane comes to his rescue when he is captured and about to be lynched.
The Last of the Line
A film about Sioux leader Chief Gray Otter (Joe Goodboy) who sends his son Tiah (Sessue Hayakawa) off to a "white man's school" so that he can become a great leader. The son returns home as a worthless drunk, disappointing the father but things get worse when the son joins a group of renegades and robs a payroll. The father is then forced to make a decision.
In the Days of the Thundering Herd
Tom and Sally are the only survivors when their wagon train is attacked by Swift Wing's braves. Starlight aids in their escape and they join a group of hunters. But there is more trouble when the tribe attacks again.
STRONGHEART (1914) is a rare Native American Indian drama that was produced by the Biograph Company in New York City. Based on a famous play of the time, the film features an all-star cast: Henry B. Walthall (later of BIRTH OF A NATION), Blanche Sweet, Antonio Moreno, Lionel Barrymore, and Alan Hale (father of "Gilligan's Island" skipper). Originally five reels, the film was reissued at three reels in 1916.