Once upon a Texas Train Reviews
After Captain Hayes arrests John Henry Lee and sends him to prison, ONCE UPON A TEXAS TRAIN leaps forward twenty years into the future. John Henry Lee (a long-haired Willie Nelson of THE ELECTRIC HORSEMAN) leaves prison and catches a ride in a wagon driven by his brother Charlie Lee (Dub Taylor of BANDOLERO!) and they head off to Del Rio. No sooner do they reach Del Rio than John Henry blows the front off the local bank and skedaddles with $20-thousand in two sacks. Naturally, Captain Hayes (Richard Widmark of ‚??The Law and Jake Wade‚??) is furious because he thought that John Henry would go straight. Hayes recruits a posse of his old time pals, among them ace tracker Jason Fitch (Jack Elam of SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL GUNFIGHTER), Nash Crawford (Chuck Connors of THE DESERTER), and George Asque (Stuart Whitman of RIO CONCHOS), to ride with him. Meanwhile, John Henry has assembled several hombres, among them Kelly Sutton (Ken Curtis of RIO GRANDE), explosives expert Nitro Jones (Royal Dano of GUNPOINT), and Fargo Parker (Gene Evans of THE STEEL HELMET) help him rob the Texas train. The voice-over narration that identifies these veterans contains some ironic humor. They are as good as they once were but they are professionals. John Henry is confident that everything will work out until he learns that the Texas Train is no longer trundling down the railroad that he remembered from yesteryear.
A gang of young guns led by Cotton (Shaun Cassidy) get the drop on John Henry and company and disarm them and take them prisoner. They escort the old bad guys to a ghost town where Captain Hayes catches up with them and a brief gunfight erupts. Secretly, John Henry has a stick of dynamite that he threatens to heave into a burning stove if Cotton doesn‚??t let them go. Reluctantly, Cotton and his gunmen surrender their guns and John Henry and company cross the street and meet Hayes and his guns. The next day our heroes deposit the arsenal of firearms that belonged to Cotton and his cronies and they have a showdown in the street in broad daylight. Of course, nobody dies. They are wounded. Nash is a bullet in the arm and John Henry helps Hayes arrest Cotton and company. Afterward, Nash offers Hayes a proposition. Nash believes if they let John Henry return the gold to the Del Rio Bank, the town citizens will let John Henry and company leave. Hayes observes that Canada is pretty this time of year before John Henry rides out.
RIO BRAVO actress Angie Dickinson has a cameo as the wife of Captain Hayes who was briefly infatuated with John Henry. They reunite momentarily at a stage coach relay station where Hayes decides to let John Henry go. As the heroic villains are riding away, they hear the sounds of a nearby locomotive and the words Texas train slips from John Henry‚??s lips. At this point, the end credits roll and we never know if John Henry will realize his life-long dream of robbing a Texas train. This unknown ending mars ONCE UPON A TEXAS TRAIN.