Time: 90 mins.
Rating: Not Rated
A clever little Western comedy that uses Cooper's trademark integrity and masculinity to garner laughs instead of awe. While his actions can be construed as heroic, once he spies the entrancing doe-eyed Young there's nothing honorable behind them. His character, Melody Jones, is a bumbling, washed-up rodeo rider drawn into the manhunt for a local outlaw, Monte Jarrad (Duryea), by the lovely Cherry (Young). His partner George (Demarest) wants nothing to do with the little lady, smelling trouble a mile away. Melody is desperate to be respected and is willing to go to any lengths to impress Cherry, eventually sacrificing his own safety to help her help Jarrad escape the long hand of the law. George does the only thing he can: continually rescue Melody from his clumsy, impetuous attempts to be the hero.
As the plot thickens, Cherry regrets her loyalty to Jarrad, an old-childhood friend, which is now threatening the life of a man she's beginning to fall in love with. Melody may be the worst gunslinger in the West, but he's smarter than he looks and has the heart and soul of a real man. If they could only escape Jarrad, who's not about to lose his girl or his money, and the posse, an ornery group looking for anyone to punish for Jarrad's crimes, they might have a chance to build a happy life together. The final gun battle has Jarrad and Melody battling each other, as well as the posse. Since Jarrad is a cold-blooded killer, you'd think he has the upper hand; however, Melody has Cherry on his side and she proves she's more than just a pretty face. This being as much of a romantic comedy as an action piece, the film ends with Cooper and Young in a passionate, sweet and slightly goofy embrace.
Those more familiar with Cooper as a stoic, respectable lawman may have a hard time enjoying the dopey, uncoordinated performance he gives here, but I found him charming, funny and still wholeheartedly masculine. He has great chemistry with both Young and Demarest, playing off her petite strength and his grumpy friendship to perfection. It's the average plot that keeps this from being a film to really remember.