Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Over-the-Hill Gang

Bruce and I recently bought a 20 movie pack of family classics. We thought it would be fun to watch old movies together and then even more fun to tell you a little about them and also what we thought of them.

Our first movie is The Over-the-Hill Gang. It was produced in 1969 by Aaron Spelling. It sure is a far cry from Beverly Hills 90210.

Plot Synopsis: Jefferson Rose, a young, Boulder, Nevada newspaper publisher, tries to run for mayor of his corrupt town. His father-in-law, Captain Oren Hayes, is a former Texas Ranger who happens to visit town the day Jefferson is roughed up by a few of the Sheriff's finest. Captain Hayes admires young Jefferson's desire to clean-up the corrupt politicians and decides that he and three of his pals will come to town and take care of business for young Jefferson.

Each of Hayes three friends had something unique to offer the Texas Rangers. The first pal was the quickest draw. The second had "eyes in the day like an eagle and at night like an owl." The third had "spotless character, courtly manners, and spit-and-polished appearance." By the time Hayes' telegram finds each of them, we see that they aren't quite what they used to be - slow, near-blind, and a card cheat.

When their first attempt at riding into Boulder and ridding it of the nasty trio of Sheriff Barnes, Mayor Lundy, and Judge Polk doesn't go over so well, they reconvene and decide to try to divide and conquer. The Sheriff becomes convinced that Mayor Lundy has hired one of the Rangers to kill him. The Judge becomes convinced that the Mayor is going to dump him after the election because of some unmerited early releases from prison.

While the Texas Rangers succeed in convincing the Sheriff and the Judge that the Mayor is out to get them, they don't quite outsmart the Mayor. In fact, the Mayor hires several outlaws to do the work for him. This requires the Rangers to really think about their next move. The end result is a shoot out at Cassie's Corral that is clever, surprising, and cheesy all at once.

Review: Overall, I felt this was a decent way to spend 70+ minutes. I couldn't find a rating for this movie, but think it would probably by PG based on current standards. There was no profanity, no sexual innuendos, and the only violence came at the beginning when Jeff was roughed up by the Deputies and then again during the shoot out at the end. Even within these violent scenes, there was no blood and no one died; again, compared to today's standards, they were very tame.

One minor complaint for my modern ears is that I sometimes had difficulty understanding what the characters were saying. Their old, wild-west accents didn't work too well with my modern, Florida ears.

Bruce gives this movie 2 out of 5 stars. He says it was reasonable entertainment for the cost of 1/20th of $5 that we paid for the set. In the end though, this movie is rather forgettable and I agree with Bruce. It was definitely worth the $0.25 we paid to have the privilege of owning this movie.

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