Two marketing professionals hire a lookalike of classic western actor Smoky Callaway to impersonate the actor and make new films, but things go awry when the real Callaway, thought long missing, returns.
A New York City detective, traveling by train between New York and Baltimore, tries to foil an on-board plot to assassinate President-elect Abraham Lincoln before he reaches Baltimore to give a major pre-Inauguration speech in 1861.
Two smart marketing people resurrect some old films starring cowboy Smoky Callaway and put them on television. The films are a big hit and the star is in demand. Unfortunately no one can find him. When a lookalike sends in a photo, the marketing team hires him to impersonate Callaway. Things get sticky when the real Callaway eventually shows up.Written by
Daniel Bubbeo <email@example.com>
Card at the end states: 'This picture was made in the spirit of fun, and was meant in no way to detract from the wholesome influence, civic mindedness and the many charitable contributions of Western idols of our American youth, or to be a portrayal of any of them.' See more »
OK, I may be a little late to the party -- Howard Keel had a long, proud and successful career as a theater and movie star. But he was amazing in the dual roles of good guy Stretch Barnes and bad guy Smoky Calloway. Even though the two characters dressed in identical outfits through most of the movie, Keel's acting craft made it early to recognize whether you were seeing Stretch or Smoky. I actually spend a few minutes wondering whether it was two different lookalike actors, and had to check into IMDb to confirm that it was the same guy.
The film itself was a clever take on the television Westerns that were popular when I was a boy. Fred MacMurray very nicely plays the role of a lovable on the outside, sleaze ball on the inside theatrical agent. Dorothy McGuire played the opposite as his partner -- reluctantly sleazy on the outside, heart of gold on the inside. Others include old standby Jesse White, and watch for Stan Freeberg as the nerd who works with MacMurray and McGuire.
But really, Howard Keel was the star, and should have gotten top billing. Overall, the film was a very pleasant way to spend an hour-and-a-half or so.
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