The Law Commands

Overview

Directed competently by the veteran William Nigh, this ultra low-budget Western from diminutive Crescent Pictures Corp. features something as unusual as a hero who is also a medical doctor. The Homestead Act of 1862 not yet enforced in Johnson County, Iowa, the local homesteaders find themselves terrorized by a gang night riders. Town leader Jed Johnson Carl Stockdale, whose property is under threat from the land grabbers, is inclined to answer force with force but is persuaded by Dr. Keith Kenton Tom Keene to ...
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Overview

Directed competently by the veteran William Nigh, this ultra low-budget Western from diminutive Crescent Pictures Corp. features something as unusual as a hero who is also a medical doctor. The Homestead Act of 1862 not yet enforced in Johnson County, Iowa, the local homesteaders find themselves terrorized by a gang night riders. Town leader Jed Johnson Carl Stockdale, whose property is under threat from the land grabbers, is inclined to answer force with force but is persuaded by Dr. Keith Kenton Tom Keene to instead found a Land Claim Association and try the usurpers in court. Jed is murdered by Frago Matthew Betz, and his children, Mary Lee Lorraine Hayes and Danny David Sharpe, blame Keith. The secret leader of the gang, John Abbott Robert Fiske, persuades Danny to head a protective agency and the homesteaders are conned into signing over half their income to Abbott. Keith, meanwhile, secures a guarantee from the governor that law and order must be enforced but returns to Johnson City to find another of the homesteaders Horace B. Carpenter killed and Danny accused of being in cahoots with Abbott. Appointed special agent by the governor, Keith arranges for Abbott and Danny to be tried in court. When Frago attempts to kill a witness, Abbott is convicted of being behind the crimes. Well-acted in most parts, The Law Commands was the seventh of eight westerns Tom Keene made for Crescent Pictures.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Hans J. Wollstein
Filmed for what looks like pennies, The Law Commands is actually a better-than-average oater, which at least tried for something new. Not only is the hero (Tom Keene) a medical doctor but screenwriter Bennett R. Cohen awarded the villain (Robert Fiske) something as unusual for the genre as a wife (Charlotte Treadwell). Budd Buster, as the comedy relief, does a fair impression of George "Gabby" Hayes -- actually offering a "durn tootin'" at one point -- and Keene is obviously a better thespian than most of his low-budget rivals. Contrary to popular belief, a young Laraine Day (aka Lorraine Johnson does not play the heroine in this film. That honor went instead to a pretty brunette named Lorraine Hayes, who was the sister of character actress Bernadene Hayes.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/27/2005
  • UPC: 089218485892
  • Original Release: 1938
  • Source: Alpha Video
  • Presentation: B&W
  • Time: 56:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 92,065

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Tom Keene Dr. Kenton
Budd Buster Kentuck
Matthew Betz Frago
Robert Fiske Abbott
John Merton Clark
Carl Stockdale Johnson
David Sharpe Danny
Marie Stoddard Min
Fred Burns
Horace B. Carpenter
Laraine Day Mary
Technical Credits
William Nigh Director
Don Barratt Editor
Bennett Ray Cohen Screenwriter
E.B. Derr Producer
Arthur Martineli Cinematographer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- The Law Commands
2. Chapter 2 [7:07]
3. Chapter 3 [12:17]
4. Chapter 4 [9:13]
5. Chapter 5 [10:35]
6. Chapter 6 [8:00]
7. Chapter 7 [7:26]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- The Law Commands
   Play
   Chapter Index
   Catalog
      Action / Adventure
      Comedy
      Silent Films
      Horror / Sci-Fi
      Drama
      TV Shows
      Mystery / Thriller
      Serials
      Classic Exploitation
      New Cinema
      Family
      Westerns
   Coming Attractions
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