Movie Review: The Cowboy Quarterback (1939)

Synopsis: Harry Lynn, a talented but dimwitted semi-professional football player from a small town in Montana, is recruited to play for the Chicago Packers. He proves to be the real deal and has his team on the fast track for a national championship. However, his love life and a $5000 gambling debt threaten to derail him.

Who's in it? The movie stars Bert Wheeler, Marie Wilson, Gloria Dickson, William Hopper and William Demarest.

Synopsis: I came across this movie a couple days ago and, thinking it might be good for laugh or two, decided to watch it this morning before heading into the office. The movie, as it turns out, ended up exceeding my expectations.

The love story between Harry (Wheeler) and his girlfriend, Maizie (Wilson), was actually pretty good, especially since it wasn't as predictable as I thought it would be. The part about him temporarily falling for another woman (Dickson) in Maizie's absence and nearly bringing an end to their relationship with an accidentaly sent letter was much more entertaining than expected and I even wound up on the edge of my seat when Maizie's other suitor (Hopper) tried to use it to his advantage at the very end.

The thing that really surprised me about this film, however, was just how complex the overall plot turned out to be. For a movie that was less than an hour in length, there was actually quite a bit packed into it. The part about Harry getting in debt and being given a choice of having to repay $5000 or throw the game was interesting, especially when Maizie wound up mixed up in it as well, making his decision a lot harder. And, I have to admit, his somewhat intelligent solution to the problem was an unexpected surprise.

My only real complaint about this movie is I feel like Harry's relationship with his roommate, Steve (Eddie Foy, Jr.) really play out as well as it probably could have. The movie's runtime probably had a lot to do with this, but it just seemed to be thrown in toward the very end without any real effort to establish them as friends. As a result of this, I wasn't sure if Steve was someone I should be rooting for because he legitimately cared about Harry or if he was only helping his roommate because he wanted to win the game.

Final Opinion: I wasn't really sure what to expect when I started watching this movie, but it turned out to be an entertaining film and one I enjoyed watching.

My Grade: B


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