This traditional Western film, photographed in “Trucolor”, centres on a white man, brought up by Indians, who saves members of a wagon train from hostile Redskins and wins an attractive bride.
There is no undue haste, and most of the characters are taken from stock, but a sound cast and resourceful director see that the mixture retains its popular flavour.
ln the late 1880s, old-timer Tip Alden (Francis McDonald) and his pretty niece Meg (Lola Albright) get separated from a wagon train in Indian-menaced territory.
They are attacked by a number of Redskins, led by irresponsible brave Crazy Fox (Charles Horvath), but Crazy Fox’s white foster brother Pale Arrow (George Montgomery), comes to their rescue.
Wise Eagle (Ralph Moody), the chief of the tribe, advises Pale Arrow to join the wagon train and find where he feels he belongs – with the white man or the Indians.
Pale Arrow takes the name Paul Fletcher and is appointed guide by Matt Delaney (Bill Williams), the leader of the wagon train.
Soon afterwards, Wise Eagle dies, and Crazy Fox captures Paul and kills several white travellers, but Dancing Fawn (Charlotte Austin), an Indian girl who secretly loves Pale Arrow, frees Paul. Paul then brings the cavalry on the scene and – following a rout of the Redskins – he marries Meg.
The picture generously pads its first half with tender shots of domestic life in the raw and budding romance, but feathers literally fly once the Indians get on the warpath and engage the US Cavalry.
George Montgomery scores as the taciturn, virile and quick-witted Pale Arrow/Paul, while Lola Albright is a comely Meg. Charles Horvath makes sure his hatchet never loses its edge as Crazy Fox, and the rest of the cast put fresh blood into stereotyped roles.
The forays are staged on a large scale and the film’s scenic qualities impress.
Released in the US as Pawnee and in the UK as Pale Arrow.
Paul ‘Pale Arrow’ Fletcher
Uncle Tip Alden
Chief Wise Eagle