The Law of Contact

Valley of Wanted Men (October 20, 1935)

Frankie Darro in Vally of Wanted Men

Released October 20, 1935: Three men framed for robbery escape prison and each searches for the man who framed them, but for very different reasons.

Directed by Alan James

The Actors: Frankie Darro (Slivers Sanderson), LeRoy Mason (Larry Doyle), Russell Hopton (Kelly Dillon), Grant Withers (Fred, ranger), Drue Leyton (Sally Sanderson), Walter Miller (Ralph Dexter), Paul Fix (Mike Masters), Fred 'Snowflake' Toones (Snowflake), Frank Rice (Ned, storekeeper), William Gould (prison warden), Al Bridge (the Sergeant), Jack Rockwell (U.S. Marshall), Georgia Caine (Mrs. Sanderson), Jack Casey (ranger), Irene Crane (singer), Slim Whitaker (deputy).


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My dad was a preacher, and over my childhood at home we lived in three different western Pennsylvania towns. During my high school years we lived in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where I graduated from high school. Nearby there was a country resort area called Indian Lake. It was promoted as a getaway vacation spot for folks from Pittsburgh, the nearest big city. The singing Cowsills even made a hit song about it (Cowsills sing Indian Lake on youtube). Arnold Palmer designed a golf course and besides the main lodge, there were many wealthy homes built around the lake to house the big city folk who wanted to get back to country/nature. Closer to Shanksville was Lake Stoneycreek, where the local folk built their getaway homes and spent their leisure time. Dennis, one of the guys that I graduated with had a father that owned the Dodge dealership in Shanksville, and his folks had a place on Lake Stoneycreek where I earned a chipped front tooth that I still can feel with my tongue today. Our class needed some money for something, so we organized the sale of big hoagie, or subway sandwiches. We spent most of a Saturday making, delivering and selling the hoagies. The volunteer fire house was where we met and gathered all of the fixings for the sandwiches. We made them, wrapped them and took them around town selling them to just about everyone. After we were all done, a group of the boys, including myself, walked the couple miles out to Lake Stoneycreek to Dennis' folks place, which was not being used at the time. I don't remember if we partied so hard that we trashed the place . . . I sure hope not. Dennis was and still is a really cool guy, and I hope he didn't get into trouble over that night. Anyway, we were playing touch football in the yard outside the house, and during one play I got accidentally kicked in the mouth, and spit out a small chunk of tooth. . . . Good times, great memories :~)

This movie takes place primarily at a resort/lodge near a small town where the local townsfolk get away to fish and hunt. At the beginning of the story we experience a thrilling prison escape with bullets flying, prisoners dropping like flies, and sirens blaring. Only three fellows escape, and just by coincidence they are three men who were all framed for a bank robbery in this small town. Now, we soon discover that Ralph Dexter is the real bank robber, and he framed the other three fellows and got away with all the loot. One of them was the bank teller who was in love with and planning to marry the banker's daughter, Sally. Frankie Darro is Slivers Sanderson, son of the banker, who is at the resort with Dexter and Sally. Dexter not only robbed the bank and framed the three fellows, he has stolen the banker's daughter's heart, and is planning to marry her! What chutzpa! Pop a big bowl of white kernel popcorn with plenty of warm melted butter on it and grab your favorite beverage and enjoy a holiday in the woods with bank robbers, the banker's son and daughter, and the wild chase for three innocent men as two of them try to get revenge and the third tries to clear his name.

Frankie DarroFred 'Snowflake' Toones
LeRoy MasonLeRoy Mason and Drue Leyton
LeRoy MasonLeRoy Mason and Drue Leyton
LeRoy Mason, Russell Hopton and Mike MastersFrankie Darro

LeRoy Mason, Russell Hopton and Paul Fix

Frankie Darro and Grant Withers