Prairie Express


55m 1947

Brief Synopsis

Johnny Hudson (Johnny Mack Brown) recovers afreight wagon belonging to Faro Jenkins (Raymond Hatton) and Dave Porter (Robert Winkler), after outlaws led by Burke (Marshall Reed) attack the pair and steal it. Real estate agent Gordon Gregg (William Ruhl as William H. Ruhl)is secretly behind the plot to break up the Porter-Jenkins freight line so that they will go bankrupt and he can claim Porter's ranch. Johnny gives Faro $2000 for new equipment. Johnny and Faro also capture a pair of the outlaws and they are jailed, but escape after Gregg knifes Sheriff Bill (Steve Darrell). Freightline employee Lem (Ted Adams), in league with Gregg's gang, steals the murder knife which Johnny had picked up for fingerprint evidence. Gregg gives Faro's freight line a special shipment and require an overnight camp and be prey for his henchmen. Johnny and Faro capture the outlaws by a trick. Burke is killed by Gregg when he demands his share of the loot, and Gregg then takes Peggy Porter (Virginia Belmont) as a hostage. Johnny arrives in time to overpower Gregg and the remnants of his gang. A new railroad promises to bring prosperity to the region.

Film Details

Also Known As
Dusty Trail
Release Date
Oct 25, 1947
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Great Western Productions, Inc.; Monogram Productions, Inc.
Distribution Company
Monogram Distributing Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
55m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1

Synopsis

As Dave Porter and Faro Jenkins are crossing the Texas flats with their freight wagon, they are attacked by masked bandits. Before the outlaws make off with the wagon, however, Texas Ranger Johnny Hudson chases them off. Later, in town, Dave and Faro, who had sent for his old friend Johnny, report to Dave sister's Peggy about the attempted robbery. Peggy, who runs the freight line with Dave, worries that because of a series of holdups, the line is losing customers and is on the verge of bankruptcy. Johnny gives Dave and Peggy enough money to resupply the business and offers to buy the equipment at the county seat. Unknown to Peggy and Dave, the local banker, Gordon Gregg, has orchestrated the robberies to force the Porters into selling their ranch and is aware of Johnny's plans. Gregg arranges for Collins, one of his henchmen, to shoot Johnny, but Collins misses his mark and is tracked by Johnny and Faro to the outlaws' hideout. There Johnny and Faro are taken prisoner and tied up, while Burke, Gregg's right-hand man, rides into town to talk to Gregg. Using a piece of broken glass, Johnny cuts the rope around his hands and overwhelms the guard. Faro and Johnny then capture the entire gang and lead them at gunpoint into town. Soon after the gang is jailed, however, Gregg stabs the trusting sheriff in the back and releases them. When Johnny finds the murder weapon, he orders that every man in town be fingerprinted in order to determine the killer's identity. Although Gregg appears to cooperate with Johnny, he secretly orders Lem, his assistant, to steal the knife before Johnny sends it and the fingerprints for analysis. That night, Faro and Johnny hide in the sheriff's office, waiting for the killer to sneak in and take the knife. After Lem finds the knife, he is surprised by Johnny and Faro, but manages to escape. Lem races to Gregg's office and is shot by the banker. Gregg tells Johnny that Lem threatened his life, but the Ranger doubts his story. Later, Gregg tries to lure Johnny into a trap, but Johnny deduces the scheme and shoots two of Gregg's outlaws. Gregg then decides to place a rush order with the Porters' freight line, knowing that Johnny, Dave and Faro will have to spend a night on the trail. When Burke uses a bird call to signal to his men, who have surrounded the freighters' camp, Johnny senses danger. The outlaws attack, but are startled to discover they have shot bedrolls filled with grain. Johnny, Faro and Dave then take the outlaws by surprise, capturing all but Burke, who rides to Gregg's office and demands $5,000 at gunpoint. As Gregg is about to pull his own gun on Burke, Peggy bursts in and holds both men at gunpoint. Gregg manages to escape, but is soon cornered by Johnny, who then kills Gregg in self-defense. After the rest of the gang is hauled off for trial, Johnny reveals to Peggy and Dave that Gregg wanted their ranch because he was aware that the railroad was planning to run tracks through their property, making the land immensely valuable. His job done, Johnny bids Faro and the Porters goodbye and rides out of town.

Film Details

Also Known As
Dusty Trail
Release Date
Oct 25, 1947
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Great Western Productions, Inc.; Monogram Productions, Inc.
Distribution Company
Monogram Distributing Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
55m
Sound
Mono
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

The working title of this film was Dusty Trail.