Black Horse Canyon (1954)

81-82 mins | Western | June 1954

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HISTORY

The working titles of this film were Echo Canyon and Wild Horse Canyon . According to a 2 Nov 1953 HR news item, Chill Wills was originally cast as "Doc Spain," but could not participate in the film due to an eye injury. Studio press materials note that the picture was shot on location in Guadalupe Canyon, ... More Less

The working titles of this film were Echo Canyon and Wild Horse Canyon . According to a 2 Nov 1953 HR news item, Chill Wills was originally cast as "Doc Spain," but could not participate in the film due to an eye injury. Studio press materials note that the picture was shot on location in Guadalupe Canyon, AZ. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
22 May 1954.
---
Daily Variety
18 May 54
p. 3.
Film Daily
3 Jun 54
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
29 Oct 1953
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Oct 1953
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
2 Nov 1953
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
5 Nov 1953
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Nov 1953
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
27 Nov 1953
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
18 May 54
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
22 May 54
p. 2.
Variety
19 May 54
p. 6.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
Asst dir
PRODUCER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
COSTUMES
MUSIC
MAKEUP
Hairstylist
Makeup
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod mgr
Scr supv
Dial dir
COLOR PERSONNEL
Technicolor col consultant
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel The Wild Horse by Les Savage, Jr. (New York, 1950).
AUTHOR
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Echo Canyon
Wild Horse Canyon
Release Date:
June 1954
Production Date:
late October--late November 1953
Copyright Claimant:
Universal Pictures Co., inc.
Copyright Date:
17 May 1954
Copyright Number:
LP3716
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Recording
Color
Technicolor
Widescreen/ratio
2:1
Duration(in mins):
81-82
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
16885
SYNOPSIS

While settling their new plot of Western rangeland, Del “Rock” Rockwell and his young partner, Ti Taylor, plan to round up some of the wild horses nearby to begin a horse ranch. Meanwhile, their neighbors, Doc Spain and his headstrong niece Aldis, spot Outlaw, the stallion that Aldis raised but lost years earlier due to his ability to open gates with his nose. Soon, Outlaw opens a gate in the Spains’ pasture and releases the mares, and although Aldis almost manages to capture him, the stallion eludes her. Later, when Rock and Ti spot Outlaw, they admire his beauty and determine to capture him. They catch and pen up some wild mares to tempt him, not realizing that some of the mares have been freed by Outlaw but actually belong to the Spains and rival rancher Harry Jennings, whom Aldis despises because he once made unwelcome advances to her. The next morning, Rock and Ti begin work on their fence but are stopped by Jennings and his men, who tie them up and take them to the sheriff, accusing them of having stolen their horses. On the way into town, they stop at the Spains’, where Aldis informs Jennings that Rock and Ti made an innocent mistake. Jennings decides to summon the sheriff, leaving Rock and Ti with Aldis, who is insulted by their assumption that she has lied on their behalf. Outside the ranch, Jennings schemes with his men to capture Outlaw in order to breed him, and in a subsequent attempt to corral the horse, Jennings’ henchman is trampled. When the sheriff arrives at the Spains’ and exonerates Rock and Ti, Jennings shows up and insists that ... +


While settling their new plot of Western rangeland, Del “Rock” Rockwell and his young partner, Ti Taylor, plan to round up some of the wild horses nearby to begin a horse ranch. Meanwhile, their neighbors, Doc Spain and his headstrong niece Aldis, spot Outlaw, the stallion that Aldis raised but lost years earlier due to his ability to open gates with his nose. Soon, Outlaw opens a gate in the Spains’ pasture and releases the mares, and although Aldis almost manages to capture him, the stallion eludes her. Later, when Rock and Ti spot Outlaw, they admire his beauty and determine to capture him. They catch and pen up some wild mares to tempt him, not realizing that some of the mares have been freed by Outlaw but actually belong to the Spains and rival rancher Harry Jennings, whom Aldis despises because he once made unwelcome advances to her. The next morning, Rock and Ti begin work on their fence but are stopped by Jennings and his men, who tie them up and take them to the sheriff, accusing them of having stolen their horses. On the way into town, they stop at the Spains’, where Aldis informs Jennings that Rock and Ti made an innocent mistake. Jennings decides to summon the sheriff, leaving Rock and Ti with Aldis, who is insulted by their assumption that she has lied on their behalf. Outside the ranch, Jennings schemes with his men to capture Outlaw in order to breed him, and in a subsequent attempt to corral the horse, Jennings’ henchman is trampled. When the sheriff arrives at the Spains’ and exonerates Rock and Ti, Jennings shows up and insists that Outlaw is a rogue who must be killed. Aldis protests, after which Rock convinces the sheriff to allow her one week to capture and tame the stallion before declaring the horse a menace. Aldis is pleased, until Rock once again insults her by suggesting that she needs a man to help her with her task. Rock and Ti spend the night in Aldis’ barn. Ti is falling in love with Aldis, unaware that her maid, Juanita, is smitten with him. Later, Aldis uses her feminine wiles to persuade Rock to help her break Outlaw, but Rock refuses because he must secure his own ranch before winter. Later that night, Jennings approaches Rock and Ti in secret and offers to share the profits from Outlaw’s brood if they will capture and hide the stallion for the next week. Although Rock and Ti reject the offer and instead decide to help Aldis, she assumes they are working against her. Therefore, when Rock and Ti try to trap Outlaw the next day, she shoots at Rock, who feigns an injury in order to lure her closer and lasso her. Finally, the misunderstanding is cleared up, and Rock and Ti agree to stay at the Spains’ for the next weeks. Three days later, after Outlaw still eludes them, Jennings announces that he is hiring a notorious gunslinger to kill the horse in four days. As Rock and Ti build a stronger pen for Outlaw, Ti tells Rock he wants to declare his love to Aldis, and Rock, knowing that Aldis considers Ti a child, advises him to keep quiet. Ti leaves, after which Aldis appears and accidentally stumbles into Rock’s arms, and the two kiss. Soon after, Doc and Aldis find Outlaw on the range and, with Rock’s help, capture him. Jennings learns of their triumph and that night brings his henchmen to the pen, where they beat up Ti, who is standing guard, and free the horse. Upon discovering the loss, Aldis is ready to give up, but Rock insists on trying again. The next day, they track Outlaw to Echo Canyon and together trap the stallion. Within days, Outlaw is becoming slightly tamer, and Rock and Ti decide to return to their ranch. Before they leave, Ti rebuffs Juanita’s attentions and vows to return to marry Aldis. Just then, Aldis is thrown by Outlaw when she tries to saddle him, and is chagrined by Rock’s harsh scolding. Days later, however, she shows up at Rock’s ranch in her prettiest dress to ask for help breaking Outlaw. Rock at first refuses but acquiesces at Ti’s urging. Soon, they have Outlaw saddled, and although Rock knows Outlaw is not ready to be ridden, Ti, hoping to impress Aldis, mounts the bucking stallion. He is soon thrown, but is not hurt. Nonetheless, Aldis chastises Rock for letting Ti ride, and in response Rock orders her to stop encouraging Ti’s affections. Their subsequent quarrel ends in a passionate kiss, which Ti witnesses. Ti punches Rock, and when Rock prepares to fight back, Aldis begs him not to hurt “the child.” Devastated, Ti prepares to leave, and Rock, knowing he cannot protect Ti forever, lets him go without a word. Rock then mounts Outlaw, after which a hidden Jennings opens the gate, knowing that Rock will not be able to control the stallion outside the pen. Jennings and his henchman then shoot in the air to frighten Outlaw, and Ti, who has stopped in the nearby hills, hears the shots and returns. Together, Rock and Ti fight off Jennings and his man while Aldis ropes Outlaw. With their rivals beaten, Rock and Ti shake hands, and Ti and Aldis together coerce Rock to set a wedding date.
+

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.