And here we are for the only movie that Gary Cooper ever produced himself, the 1945 Western comedy Along Came Jones, starring Gary Cooper and Loretta Young.
In this movie, Gary Cooper plays Melody Jones, a “bronc stomper,” who has just ridden into the town of Payneville with his buddy George (William Demarest). Upon seeing his initials on his saddle, the townspeople mistake him for the outlaw Monte Jarrad (Dan Duryea). Before the townspeople can shoot them, they are helped out of town by Cherry de Longpre (Loretta Young). Of course, she has her own reason for helping them: she is Monte Jarrad’s girlfriend, and she is trying to aim the posse the wrong way! Not long after starting out, Melody realizes this, and he comes back. He ends up helping her anyways, when he sees that she wants out of the relationship.
I would say that I enjoy this movie. Most of the comedy is provided by Gary Cooper as he does a sendup of his cowboy image, as he is the biggest klutz with a gun, usually dropping it as he tries to draw or missing completely when he does manage to shoot. I would say the movie’s biggest flaw is its use of rear projection screens. While I know this was how they did things then because they didn’t have our modern technology to help, the effect is still a lot more jarring than usual, with the image really matching up poorly with the action in front. If you can get past that, then there is a fun movie to be found here, I think.
This movie is available on Blu-ray and DVD from Classicflix. The movie starts with a disclaimer that more or less says that time hasn’t been kind to the film elements and they did the best they could to restore it. There are still some scratches here and there, but I think the transfer looks pretty good (far better than I would have thought after seeing that disclaimer)! And I do have to admit, I tried this movie mostly because Classicflix released it on disc. And I wasn’t disappointed! So I do recommend this release! The movie is one hour, thirty minutes in length.
My Rating: 7/10