Classic Western Round-Up, Vol. 1
The Texas Rangers(1936)         Canyon Passage (1946)
Kansas Raiders (1950)       The Lawless Breed (1953)

 

Journey back to the Old West for timeless adventures in the Classic Western Round-Up: Volume 1! Relive all the gunfights, barroom brawls and romance with The Texas Rangers, Canyon Passage, Kansas Raiders and The Lawless Breed. Starring Hollywood favorites Rock Hudson, Fred MacMurray, Audie Murphy and Dana Andrews, this action-packed collection features some of the most exciting films ever to hit the silver screen! The Texas Rangers (1936) Two crooks (Fred MacMurray and Jack Oakie) reluctantly enlist in the Texas Rangers as a means of staying one-step ahead of the law. Canyon Passage (1946) Adventure awaits when a pack-mule express owner (Dana Andrews) escorts a young woman (Susan Hayward) home to a remote Oregon town. Kansas Raiders (1950) Jesse James (Audie Murphy) and his brothers join William Quantrill (Brian Donlevy) and his vengeful raiders in an effort to save the Confederacy. The Lawless Breed (1953) When famed outlaw John Wesley Hardin (Rock Hudson) is released from prison, he gives an in-depth account of his scandalous life to a local newspaper.

 


Titles

 

 


 

The Texas Rangers
Stars Fred MacMurray, Jack Oakie, Jean Parker, Lloyd Nolan, Edward Ellis
Directors: King Vidor
Theatrical Release Date: August 28, 1936
Synopsis - Riding silently in column, past towering cliffs and beneath ornate cloudscapes, the Rangers proceed on their implacable way, to showdowns featuring such declarations as 'Ain't no more room for your kind of Texan' and would-be amusing dialogue equating dead Indians with rotten apples. Redskin beware! Outlaw beware! (Though the latter merits the post-mortem valediction, 'Hope you'll let him in up there. He just got on the wrong trail, that's all.') The dilemma arising from this movie is whether to emphasize the correspondences between it and contemporary Nazi cinema or whether to focus on the distinctions. Vidor was himself a Texan and unembarrassed, it seems, by the concept of Texas as (after the elimination of undesirable elements) a paradise situated in the south of Utopia. It's mildly amusing, therefore, that the archetypal scenery framing all those stereotypical characters should actually be situated near Gallup, New Mexico.

Excerpt from TimeOut Film Guide located HERE
 

Canyon Passage
Stars Dana Andrews, Brian Donlevy, Susan Hayward, Patricia Roc, Ward Bond
Directors: Jacques Tourneur
Theatrical Release Date: July 17, 1946
Synopsis - In 1856, backwoods businessman Logan Stuart escorts Lucy Overmire, his friend's fiancée, back home to remote Jacksonville, Oregon; in the course of the hard journey, Lucy is attracted to Logan, whose heart seems to belong to another. Once arrived in Jacksonville, a welter of subplots involve villains, fair ladies, romantic triangles, gambling fever, murder, a cabin-raising, and vigilantism...culminating with an Indian uprising that threatens all the settlers. No canyon in sight.

Kansas Raiders
Stars Audie Murphy, Brian Donlevy, Marguerite Chapman, Scott Brady, Tony Curtis
Directors: Ray Enright
Theatrical Release Date: November 20, 1950
Synopsis - Audie Murphy plays a young Jesse James falling under the Svengali-like spell of the outlaw William Quantrill, played by Brian Donlevy. Jesse and his youthful gang join the rebels to avenge the death of his parents only to become disillusioned with the senseless violence and looting of innocent civilians. Goaded by Quantrill's girl to leave, Jesse vacillates until the Yankess close in. Quantrill forces Jesse to leave and faces the Yankess gunfire alone. Jesse rides off with his gang and the rest is history.

The Lawless Breed
Stars Rock Hudson, Julie Adams, Mary Castle, John McIntire, Hugh O'Brian
Directors: Raoul Walsh
Theatrical Release Date: January 3, 1953
Synopsis - Released from jail, John Wesley Hardin leaves an account of his life with the local newspaper. It tells of his overly religious father, his resulting life of cards and guns, and his love for his step-sister replaced on her death during a gun fight with that for dance-hall girl Rosie.  

Posters

Theatrical Releases: 1936 - 1953

  DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Universal Studios (2-disc) - Region 1 - NTSC

DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

Distribution Universal Studios - Region 1 - NTSC
Time: Respectively 1:38:36, 1:31:42, 1:20:09 + 1:22:42
Bitrate: Disc 1
Bitrate: Disc 2
Audio English (2.0 stereo)
Subtitles English, French, None
Features

Release Information:
Studio: Universal Studios Home Video

Aspect Ratio:
All Original Aspect Ratios - 1.33 

Edition Details:

  • • Unrestored trailers for all except Canyon Passage


DVD Release Date: May 8th, 2007

Standard 2 tiered Keep Cases inside a cardboard box
Chapters: various 

 

 

Comments:

The 4 features of the Classic Western Round-Up, Vol. 1 boxset are spread over 2 dual-layered DVDs (2 films on each disc). They are all 1.33 aspect ratio and 3 of the 4 films are color efforts. There are optional English or French subtitles and the discs are specifically divided as follows:

Disc 1: The Texas Rangers (1936) with trailer and Canyon Passage (1946)

Disc 2: Kansas Raiders (1950) and The Lawless Breed (1953) - both with trailers

So there are no real extras and the pragmatic packaging is represented in the price. Image quality looks quite strong on the 3 color efforts and only The Texas Rangers showing its age - looking very grainy and its audio is the only issue that I have with any of the transfers. It does, however look consistent with fair greyscale. I'll openly state that I have never seen any of these films theatrically and cannot be any judge of how the colors looked on Canyon Passage, Kansas Raiders and The Lawless Breed from the original condition. To me they all looked exceptional good but each had moments of 'funkiness' where colors seemed to go haywire (orangey red skies/skin tones etc.). The screen captures below are a good representation of how the DVD appearance is - and detail is excellent considering. The discs are housed in one standard dual 'keep case' and are not sold separately at this time. Both DVDs are coded for Region 1 in the NTSC standard. I would say my expectations were exceeded in regards to the image quality.

I suspect that Universal have vastly underestimated the appeal of these films - Tourneur's Canyon Passage (mentioned in the Jonathan Rosenbaum article for DVDBeaver - A Dozen Eccentric Westerns) alone would be worth the value of this entire set. But if you include even mediocre western efforts by both King Vidor and Raoul Walsh - well forget about it! For western fans this is a no-brainer purchase and I'm really looking forward to Classic Western Round-up Volume 2 with 2 Budd Boetticher films! It is all good folks!  

Gary W. Tooze




DVD Menus



Screen Captures

 

The Texas Rangers


Stars Fred MacMurray, Jack Oakie, Jean Parker, Lloyd Nolan, Edward Ellis


Directors: King Vidor


Theatrical Release Date: August 28, 1936

 

 


 

Screen Captures

 

 

Canyon Passage


Stars Dana Andrews, Brian Donlevy, Susan Hayward, Patricia Roc, Ward Bond


Directors: Jacques Tourneur


Theatrical Release Date: July 17, 1946

 

 

 


 

Screen Captures

 

Kansas Raiders


Stars Audie Murphy, Brian Donlevy, Marguerite Chapman, Scott Brady, Tony Curtis


Directors: Ray Enright


Theatrical Release Date: November 20, 1950

 

 


 

Screen Captures

 

 

 The Lawless Breed


Stars Rock Hudson, Julie Adams, Mary Castle, John McIntire, Hugh O'Brian


Directors: Raoul Walsh


Theatrical Release Date: January 3, 1953

 

 

 

 

 


 

DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

Distribution Universal Studios - Region 1 - NTSC




 

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