Today’s film is Jesse James at Bay. Made in 1941, this film stars Roy Rogers, Trigger, George “Gabby” Hayes, Sally Payne, Gale Storm, Roy Barcroft, and Hal Taliaferro. Roy plays the notorious outlaw, Jesse James, and a hired gunman, Clint Burns. A land-stealing railroad man promised the local farmers an easy price of three dollars an acre for rich farm land, then upped it to one hundred dollars an acre after the farmers had developed it. He was then seizing the land from farmers who couldn’t pay and selling it for a high profit. Jesse steps in to help the farmers and is succeeding. The sheriff, Gabby, turns a blind eye to Jesse’s activities. He thinks that what Jesse is doing is right and good – besides, Jesse helped Gabby build a cabin a few years ago. Jesse gets some help from two St. Louis reporters (Storm and Payne) who have caught on to the double situation.
Jesse James at Bay (1941)
56 minutes (black and white)
Producer: Joseph Kane
Director: Joseph Kane
Screenplay: James R. Webb
Cast: Roy Rogers, Trigger, Gabby Hayes, Sally Payne, Pierre Watkin, Ivan Miller, Hal Taliaferro, Gale Storm, Roy Barcroft, Jack Kirk, Billy Benedict, Jack O’Shea, Rex Lease, Ed Piel, Jack Rockwell, Kit Guard, Curley Dresden, Hank Bell, Bill Wolfe, Fred Burns, Bob Woodward, Chuck Morrison
Plot: Jesse (Roy) literally robs from the rich to give to the poor in this fictionalized account of the famous bad man. Jesse joins with Missouri settlers in their batter with rich, land-grabbing railroad magnates. Roy plays a double by the name of Clint Burns as well. Burns is hired by the bad guy leader to rob the poor farmers that Jesse is trying to help. Because of this, the farmers start turning against Jesse and threatening to turn him in. Jesse has to catch Burns and put a stop to his robbing, burning, and murdering before law and order can be restored.
Songs: “You for Me” and “The Old Chisholm Trail”
This film is available as a DVD, VHS, or Instant Video here.