Cockeyed Cowboys of Calico County (1970)
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The Cockeyed Cowboys of Calico County
The Cockeyed Cowboys of Calico County is a 1970 American comedy western film by Universal Studios, directed by Anton Leader and Ranald MacDougall, and starring Dan Blocker and Nanette Fabray, with a supporting cast featuring Jim Backus, Mickey Rooney, Wally Cox, Jack Elam, Noah Beery, Jr. and Don "Red" Barry. MacDougal wrote the screenplay.
The film became Blocker's final role (besides his long-running role as "Hoss Cartwright" on Bonanza) before his premature death from complications arising from gall bladder surgery in May 1972. In late 2010 the Encore Westerns channel began showing this film intermittently on their schedule.
A simple-minded blacksmith named Charley, beloved by the townsfolk, saves for a year to send for a mail-order bride. When Charley and many of the townsfolk gather at the train station to greet the woman on her scheduled arrival date, she fails to appear and Charley is publicly embarrassed. Realizing that he has been suckered out of his savings and feeling like a fool, Charley plans to leave the town for good.
Charley is the town’s only blacksmith and no one else is available to replace him. In order to persuade him to stay, the townsfolk recruit a saloon girl named Sadie to pose as Charley’s mail-order bride. As Charley is a straight-and-narrow sort of person, he has never been in the saloon and does not immediately recognize the woman for who she really is. The film is about Charley’s simple-minded efforts to see through the deceit and the townspeople’s efforts to maintain the fiction that a saloon girl is as pure as the driven snow.