The Luck of Roaring Camp (November 17, 1937)

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The Luck of Roaring Camp
 

Released on November 7, 1937: A orphan baby boy in a rough gold prospecting camp is cared for by a young man and the saloon singer while the men of the camp mine a rich gold ore nearby.

Produced by Scott R. Dunlap

Directed by Irvin Willat

The Actors: Owen Davis Jr. (Davy), Charles Brokaw (Don Oakhurst), Joan Woodbury (Elsie), Sheila Bromley (Susan Oakhurst), Ferris Taylor (Judge Brandt), Bob Kortman (Yuba Bill), Charles King (Sandy), Byron Foulger (Kentuck), Robert McKenzie (Tuttle), Ray Bennett (Blaney), John 'Rusty' Brecknell (baby), Budd Buster (single tooth), Jim Corey (stage driver Starbottle), Richard Cramer (gambler), Tex Driscoll (townsman), Jack Evans (juror), Robert Fiske (Sheriff), Helen Gibson (woman in saloon), George Morrell (barfly), Bill Patton (juror), Bud Pope (barfly), John Wallace (unknown), Blackie Whiteford (saloon bully)

 

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Luck is a Queer Thing, Susan . . .

For most of us in the twenty-first century death is something that will never enter our thoughts until we are very, very old . . . But it wasn't that long ago that death was a constant companion to the pioneers in the U. S. who were trying to carve a good life out of the rugged earth of this new land. In the 1930's as motion pictures were being created, most of the stories about the Wild West centered around some outlaws and a tall, handsome cowboy who could lick all the bad guys with a smile on his face and a song sung while strumming a guitar . . . But the real life of the pioneers of the West was much different . . . much like this story, maybe. This isn't a cowboy and outlaws adventure, but a slice of raw, pioneer life and death . . . There is no tall, fast-shooting cowboy to ride to the rescue . . . There is no helpless gal to be saved . . . Just men and women struggling for tomorrow, and calling on lady luck to bring them good fortune . . . The opening words to this saga are spoken by a man on his way to a hangman's noose. He tells his wife, "Luck is a queer thing, Susan . . . All we know about it for certain is that it is bound to change." His pregnant wife Susan is riding along with him on the way out of town in front of the men who are searching for the perfect tree to hang him from. Suddenly the man and his wife gallop away from the hangmen and the man winds up floating down a wild river, probably to his death . . . what luck. We next see his wife, heavy with child, walking into the small gold-mining town of Roaring Camp and collapsing on the steps of the general store and saloon. Susan's luck isn't so good either, as she dies soon after giving birth to a young baby boy. Her dying words are a plea to the rough men at the camp to take care of her boy because he will bring them luck. Soon we watch an old prospector and his mule . . . The man falls down a hill and the mule runs away . . . The man had broken his leg and cannot walk . . . A flock of buzzards circle overhead in anticipation of a good meal . . . The man starts digging his own grave to build a foxhole that the buzzards will not enter . . . Luck is a fickle lady at best . . . Pop a big bowl of white kernel popcorn with plenty of warm melted butter drizzled over it and enjoy the show . . . if you feel lucky.

Bob Kortman
Bob Kortman
Bob Kortman and Byron Foulger
Bob Kortman and Byron Foulger
Bob Kortman
Bob Kortman
Budd Buster
Budd Buster
Budd Buster
Budd Buster
Byron Foulger
Byron Foulger
Byron Foulger
Byron Foulger
Charles Brokaw
Charles Brokaw
Charles Brokaw and Joan Woodbury
Charles Brokaw and Joan Woodbury
Charles Brokaw and Joan Woodbury
Charles Brokaw and Joan Woodbury
Charles Brokaw and Ray Bennett
Charles Brokaw and Ray Bennett
Charles Brokaw playing poker
Charles Brokaw playing poker
Charles Brokaw and Joan Woodbury
Charles Brokaw and Joan Woodbury
Charles Brokaw
Charles Brokaw
Charles King
Charles King
Charles King and Ferris Taylor
Charles King and Ferris Taylor
Ferris Taylor
Ferris Taylor
Ferris Taylor
Ferris Taylor
Joan Woodbury and Owen Davis Jr.
Joan Woodbury and Owen Davis Jr.
Joan Woodbury
Joan Woodbury
John 'Rusty' Brecknell
John 'Rusty' Brecknell
Owen Davis Jr. and Robert McKenzie
Owen Davis Jr. and Robert McKenzie
Owen Davis Jr.
Owen Davis Jr.
Robert McKenzie and Joan Woodbury
Robert McKenzie and Joan Woodbury
Robert McKenzie
Robert McKenzie
Sheila Bromley and Charles Brokaw
Sheila Bromley and Charles Brokaw
Sheila Bromley
Sheila Bromley