An altruistic department-store owner hires ex-convicts in order to give them a second chance at life. Unfortunately, one of the convicts he hires recruits two of his fellow ex-convicts in a plan to rob the store.
British hunter Thorndike vacationing in Bavaria has Hitler in his gun sight. He is captured, beaten, left for dead, and escapes back to London where he is hounded by German agents and aided by a young woman.
Vance Shaw gives up outlawing and goes to work for the telegraph company; his brother Jack Slade leads outlaws trying to prevent the company connecting the line between Omaha and Salt Lake City. Lots of Indian fighting and gunplay.Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
Studio publicity noted that Fox contract star Henry Fonda had served as technical adviser on the film, due to his experience as a young man working as a lineman. Fonda's "technical advisory" capacity was most certainly a publicity fiction, and in any event Fonda was not credited on the film itself. See more »
Most of this movie takes place in Nebraska. Nebraska is not sagebrush country, except for a VERY small piece of Deuel County, near the Colorado border. See more »
[on the whereabouts of a recently deceased railroad worker]
He's being slapped with a spade right now.
See more »
If Western Union isn't exactly the real story of the construction of the Transcontinental Telegraph, it certainly does capture the spirit and dedication of the people involved with the project.
Dean Jagger is the man in charge and one fine day he's thrown from a horse and sustains some fractured ribs. An outlaw on the run, Randolph Scott, finds Jagger and is ready to steal his horse, but changes his mind and brings Jagger to help. Later on he's hired by Western Union and works for Jagger.
Jagger also hires a young easterner played by Robert Young who's an engineer. Young is doing one of his few loan out films away from MGM for 20th Century Fox. Both Young and Scott become friends, but rivals for Jagger's sister Virginia Gilmore.
Western Union has plenty of action, enough to satisfy any western fans. The telegraph crew has to deal with outlaws, Indians, and your garden variety labor troubles.
Slim Summerville as the timid cook and Victor Killian as the frontier character assigned to guard him have some of the funniest scenes. They both provide some good comic relief.
Fritz Lang got good performances from his cast and kept the film moving briskly along. Western Union is solid western entertainment.
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