The Apple Dumpling Gang

The Apple Dumpling Gang 1975  6 out of 10

The Apple Dumpling Gang tells the story of a gambler (played by Bill Bixby)  ends up agreeing to take care of some valuables for an old associate during a poker game.  The valuables in question end up being three orphaned children.  Since this is really going to cramp his style he tries unloading the kids on someone else.    While he is gambling the kids explore their folks old gold mine claim and during an earthquake come across a giant gold nugget.  After this everyone in the town, of course, wants to be their guardian.  Bill Bixby’s character realizing he needs to do what is in the best interest of the kids to keep others from taking advantage of them.

The main story makes for a nice family-themed Western movie. The best elements of the story, however, are Tim Conway and Don Knotts characters are basically the comic relief of the film.   This would just be a very average film without the additions of this comedy duo that would work on several films together including this film’s sequel.  Don Knotts and Tim Conway work so well together on screen.   The best scene in the movie has these two bumbling crooks trying to break into the bank to steal the gold.  The scene includes them trying to steal a ladder from the firehouse which is pure gold.    This film is worth re-visiting if just for the scenes with Conway and Knotts.

Of course, it can be found now on Disney+