Pony Soldier is a well-made Western though mostly remembered for its Technicolor beauty rather than a weak storyline and modest performances from the cast.
Screen Archives Entertainment | NR – 82 min. – $29.99 | February 12, 2013
Directed by: Joseph M. Newman
Writer(s): Gamett Weston (story), John C. Higgins (screenplay)
Cast: Tyrone Power, Cameron Mitchell, Thomas Gomez, Penny Edwards, Robert Horton, Anthony Numkena, Adeline De Walt Reynolds, Howard Petrie, Stuart Randall
Theatrical Release Date: December 19, 1952
Features: Isolated Score Track
Number of Discs: 1
Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 1.0)
Video: 1080p/Full Frame 1.33
Disc Size: 22.5 GB
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Outline: Pony Soldier stars Twentieth Century Fox’s great contract player, Tyrone Power, as a stalwart Canadian Mountie, sent with a lone, reluctant guide (THOMAS GOMEZ) to bring a tribe of 1000 Crees back to their reservation on the Canada-Montana border. Along the way, he must deal diplomatically with the great Cree leader Standing Bear (STUART RANDALL), a rebellious Dog Soldier (CAMERON MITCHELL), a snarling fugitive from the law (ROBERT HORTON), a pretty hostage (PENNY EDWARDS), and an orphaned Cree boy (ANTHONY NUMKENA) intent on finding himself an adoptive father.
SPECIAL FEATURES – 0.5/5
Note: This is a limited edition where Screen Archives only produced 3,000 copies.
The only feature is an Isolated Score Track featuring Alex North’s wonderful music. Inside the case is a 6-page booklet with an essay about the movie.
VIDEO – 3.0/5
Arriving on Blu-ray through Screen Archives Entertainment, Pony Soldier doesn’t look bad but also doesn’t feature the finest detail levels even compared to older movies (this one is 61 years as of this writing) but the color array, using Technacolor at the time, is brilliant. Watching, I didn’t notice any obvious signs of artifacting, pixilation or scratches making for a good print.
AUDIO – 3.75/5
On the audio side, this disc has been given a 1.0 DTS-HD MA track which is suitable showing off some OK depth, from the center channel of course, for dialogue, gunfire and the sort. Where the track does come to life, albeit limited, is the aforementioned score.
OVERALL – 3.0/5
Overall, Pony Soldier is a well-made Western though mostly remembered for its Technicolor beauty rather than a weak storyline and modest performances from the cast. This limited edition Blu-ray has acceptable video while the audio is decent especially for a mono track. The biggest fault with this release is the lack of features and given a hefty, and strict, $30 price tag, I’m not sure if it’s really worth it.