Jane Withers 3-Film Collection [3 Discs] [DVD]

This three-film collection features the screen debut of Henry Fonda in The Farmer Takes a Wife, a story set along the Erie Canal in the 1850s. Also: The Chicken Wagon Family, starring child star Jane Withers and veteran character actor Leo Carrillo; and Golden Hoofs, about a female horse trainer who works on her grandpa's farm training trotters.
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Overview

Synopsis

Golden Hoofs
In this drama, a female horse trainer works on her grandpa's farm training trotters. Trouble ensues when he is forced to sell his land to a millionaire who endeavors to replace the trotters with regular racehorses. The trainer ends up falling for the new owner. Even though her favorite horse loses the big race, the woman succeeds in getting the owner to return her affections. The grandfather also wins when the couple donates a large amount to his favorite charity, the local community hospital. ~ Sandra Brennan, Rovi

The Farmer Takes a Wife
Henry Fonda made his screen debut in this filmization of his Broadway success The Farmer Takes a Wife. The story is set along the Erie Canal in the 1850s. Fonda plays a farmer who takes a river job to make ends meet. He falls in love with Janet Gaynor, daughter of a canal-boat cook, who thinks very little of farmers. Nonetheless, Fonda and Gaynor marry, much to the displeasure of canal skipper Charles Bickford, who'd assumed that Janet was his girl. When Fonda avoids a fight with Bickford, Janet believes that he's yellow, but he eventually proves otherwise. It is said that during his first day on the set, movie novice Henry Fonda, noting the camera direction "dolly with Dan and Molly" in the script, asked director Victor Fleming who Dolly was. Adapted from the play by Frank B. Elser and Marc Connelly, The Farmer Takes a Wife was remade with Betty Grable and Dale Robertson in 1955. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

The Chicken Wagon Family
Based on a novel by Barry Benefield, Chicken Wagon Family affords nearly equal screen time to child star Jane Withers and veteran character actor Leo Carrillo. Tired of living in the boonies, itinerant merchant J. P. B. Fiffany (Carrillo) packs his family into his ramshackle wagon and sets out for New York. Alas, Fiffany has a fondness for poker, losing his hard-earned wages as quickly as he gets them. Fortunately, his enterprising daughter Addie (Jane Withers) is a human cornucopia of money-making schemes, and it is she who saves the day. Chicken Wagon Family was originally purchased by Fox as a Will Rogers vehicle, but was put on the back burner when Rogers died in 1935. Musical highlights include Jane Withers' boisterous rendition of "Daughter of Mademoiselle," originally performed by Louise Hovick (aka Gypsy Rose Lee) in The Battle of Broadway (1939). ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Jane Withers
    Jane Withers - Jane Drake
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    Charles "Buddy" Rogers - Dean MacArdle
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    George Irving - Dr. Timothy Drake
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    Buddy Pepper - Morthy Witherspoon
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    Cliff Clark - Booth
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