The Mysterious Avenger (1936) APPROVED · 54min · Romance, Western · 17 January 1936
Another of the Charles Starrett westerns sold as "Peter B. Kyne Productions" that Peter B. Kyne had nothing to do with as either the producer or the writer beyond the use of his name by Columbia. Ford Beebe's "original" script had also been done before by other writers at Columbia for both a Buck Jones and a Bob Allen film. Texas Ranger Ranny Maitland comes to Medicine Springs to solve the rustling mystery that is the cause of a feud between his cattleman father and neighboring rancher Lockhart. He arrives at the Lockhart ranch and introduces himself as Ranny Morgan. His father arrives and explains he has come to end the feud and, in response to Ranny's signal, he does not acknowledge him as his son. The elder Maitland is killed during a meeting with Lockhart and the sheriff arrests Lockhart, although Manny suspects Brophy, the Lockhart foreman. In jail, Lockhart tells Ranny he knows he is Maitland's son, and that his father had told him that both their herds were being rustled by a gang made up of cowpunchers from both ranches. Lafe, Lockhart's son, is implicated when it is discovered that the rustler's brand, a cross-in-a-box, is registered in his name. Ranny also discovers that cattle cars were ordered in Lafe's name at the Blockade Canyon siding for the next day, and is forced to arrest him. Ranny knows that the Lockharts are innocent and suggests to the sheriff that they be allowed to escape, and that will furnish them with an excuse to gather a posse without arousing the suspicions of the rustlers. But Brophy learns of the plan and he and his men kidnap the Lockharts from their hiding place at the sheriff's home. Alice discovers her father and brother are missing and tells Ranny and they both ride to the Blockade siding. - Written by Les Adams
Director(s): David Selman Cast: Charles Starrett, Joan Perry, Wheeler Oakman
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