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HollywoodGolightly

"Across the Wide Missouri" (1951)

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I could not find an existing thread for this 1951 western, which TCM is showing again tomorrow as part of the Ricardo Montalban birthday tribute. This is the one where he plays Ironshirt, a Native American.

 

The movie has a pretty good cast and was directed by William Wellman. I think I watched this one a long time ago, also on TCM, since it isn't available on home video at the moment, and really thought it made very good use of its locations.

 

Anyone else a fan of this film? And could this one be considered a frontier western?

 

*Across The Wide Missouri* (1951) 9am ET on Wed., Nov. 25

An explorer leads the way west for 19th-century settlers along the American frontier.

Cast: Clark Gable, Ricardo Montalban, John Hodiak, Adolphe Menjou Dir: William Wellman C-78 mins, TV-G

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Well I watched WIDE MISSOURI this am and found it was very nicely filmed with lovely backgrounds, but beyond that it doesn't deliver. No effort was made for character development all we know about Gable is that he is an experienced trapper who purchases and Indian wife to trade and along the way falls in love. We are never shown the growth of this relationship , they marry, they travel west, she has a baby. John Hodiak's character was a rich opportunity for development, but again they never go there, he arrives at the beginning & we are told he is Scot who lives with the Indians.. opportunity knocks.. and nobody answers and this is pretty much all we learn about him. Ricardo its an early role i'm sure the ladies will admire his rippled chest, but beyond that all we learn is that he doesn't like Whites.

 

Its a pretty film that's not really a movie, but a tableau its more akin to watching a view master then a movie and thats how my morning has gone..

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Wellman disowned the film, wouldn't even discuss it it later life. It's got an A-level cast and a B-level running time to attest to the massive editing the film went through. Keel's narration was an afterthought intended to cover up the holes that resulted from the butchery.

 

Very pretty to look at though.

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> {quote:title=clore wrote:}{quote}

> Wellman disowned the film, wouldn't even discuss it it later life. It's got an A-level cast and a B-level running time to attest to the massive editing the film went through. Keel's narration was an afterthought intended to cover up the holes that resulted from the butchery.

>

> Very pretty to look at though.

 

I always did kind of wonder why a movie with such a good cast would have such a short running time. Now I know. I'm sure what went on behind the scenes must have been fascinating.

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