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Destry Rides Again
Destry Rides Again “A devious, power-mad boss takes over
  the town of Bottleneck and the local
  cattle ranches, setting up a crooked
  game of cards to ensure total control
  until his cheating is discovered by the
  town’s sheriff who winds up dead;
  only to be replaced by the incompetent
  town drunk in the brilliant tongue-in-
  cheek 1939 Western movie Destry Rides

RIDING HIGH ON HUMOUR and Old West charm, Destry Rides Again retains all the magnetism created when the movie was first shown in 1939 as power-hungry Kent (Brian Donlevy), who has taken over the town of Bottleneck, ruthlessly eliminates anyone who stands in his way.

Kent is out to control all the cattle ranches in the area by playing a fixed game of cards to cheat the cattlemen with the help of saloon singer Frenchy (the magnificent Marlene Dietrich).

Hugely amusing and
Destry Rides Again
is a terrific movie with
cool Stewart and
firebrand Dietrich
making the sparks fly.
One for Western
enthusiasts and film fans
The town's sheriff Joseph Keogh (Joe King) discovers the reason for Kent's winning streak and he is shot; but his death is put down to a heart attack. Kent then ensures the town drunk, Washington "Wash" Dimsdale (great character actor Charles Winninger) becomes sheriff, believing that he can continue to play his crooked game and keep Wash under control.

Unknown to Kent, Wash was a deputy under legendary lawman Tom Destry; but when his mild-mannered son Thomas Jefferson "Tom" Destry Jr (the wonderful James Stewart) arrives in Bottleneck, he steadfastly refuses to carry a gun.

Knowing Tom Destry Sr's reputation for cleaning up lawless towns, Kent was at first concerned about the new arrival, but soon Tom Jr is turned into a laughing stock as nobody will believe he has other ways of making things happen.

Although the seductive Frenchy works for Kent, she begins to feel affection for Tom and Kent will eventually turn against her. She attempts to persuade Tom to leave and tries to warn him as Kent and his cronies, including the mayor, are out to silence him permanently when they discover he is determined to find out the truth about Keogh's death.

Vying for Tom's romantic attention with Frenchy is Janice Tyndall (Irene Hervey), who is unwittingly responsible for Destry's hilarious arrival in Bottleneck when he carries her canary's cage and parasol! He is going to have to fight hard to be taken seriously. But is he prepared to?

Tom's investigations into the sheriff's death, helped by Wash, leave Kent uneasy, and soon he is in danger of losing his life. Will Destry finally use his guns to free the town from Kent and his men?

Notable in this fine Western are the lead actors, including Mischa Auer as Boris Callahan, who enjoys visiting the saloon, and Una Merkel as his wife, Lily Belle Callahan, who wants to keep her husband away from it. Two of the most unforgettable moments are the cat-fight between Lily Belle and Frenchy and Frenchy's rendition of The Boys In The Backroom.

Beautifully-scripted, hugely amusing and intriguing, Destry Rides Again is a terrific movie with cool Stewart and firebrand Dietrich making the sparks fly. One for Western enthusiasts and film fans alike as Marlene Dietrich returns to her rightful place and James Stewart cements his movie career.

Destry Rides Again also features: Allen Jenkins as Gyp Watson; Warren Hymer as Bugs Watson; Billy Gilbert as Loupgerou; Samuel S Hinds as Judge Hiram J Slade; Jack Carson as Jack Tyndall; Tom Fadden as Lem Claggett; Virginia Brissac as Ma Sophie Claggett; Edmund MacDonald as Rockwell; Lilian Yarbo as Clara; Dickie Jones as Eli Whitney Claggett; Ann E Todd as Claggett Girl; and not to forget Bill Cody Jr as the boy telling Wash of Destry's arrival.

Music is by Frank Skinner; Song Lyrics by Frank Loesser; Song Music by Frederick Hollander; Director of Photography is Hal Mohr; Story by Frederick Frost and Felix Jackson, Suggested by the novel Destry Rides Again by Max Brand; Screenplay by Frederick Frost, Felix Jackson, Gertrude Purcell and Henry Myers; Costumes Designed by Vera West; Produced by Joe Pasternak; and Written and Directed by George Marshall.

* Destry Rides Again (1939) is released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment in the UK as part of the Criterion Collection on Blu-ray on 18 May 2020. Certificate: PG | Running Time: 94 Minutes | Year: 1939 | Black & White.

Special Features: New 4K digital restoration by Universal Pictures in collaboration with The Film Foundation, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray | New interview with critic Imogen Sara Smith | New interview with Donald Dewey, author of James Stewart: A Biography | Illustrated audio excerpts from a 1973 oral-history interview with director George Marshall conducted by the American Film Institute | Lux Radio Theatre adaptation of the film from 1945, featuring actors James Stewart and Joan Blondell | English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing | PLUS: An essay by critic Farran Smith Nehme.

"Hugely amusing and intriguing, Destry Rides Again is a terrific movie with cool Stewart and firebrand Dietrich making the sparks fly. One for Western enthusiasts and film fans alike" ***** Maggie Woods, MotorBar