Up 4,771 this week

The Virginian (1929)

Passed  |   |  Western  |  9 November 1929 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.9/10 from 363 users  
Reviews: 7 user | 5 critic

A good-natured cowboy who is romancing the new schoolmarm has a crisis of conscience when he discovers his best friend is engaged in cattle rustling.



(by), (by), 5 more credits »
0Check in

10 Best Back-to-School TV Shows

Dust off your varsity jacket and get excited for fall with our list of the 10 best back-to-school TV shows.

Visit our Family Entertainment Guide

Related News

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 46 titles
created 30 Jun 2012
a list of 39 titles
created 31 Dec 2012
a list of 9222 titles
created 25 Mar 2013
list image
a list of 34 titles
created 6 months ago
a list of 88 titles
created 1 month ago

Related Items

Search for "The Virginian" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: The Virginian (1929)

The Virginian (1929) on IMDb 6.9/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Virginian.

User Polls

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Plainsman (1936)
Biography | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Wild Bill Hickok attempts to stop an Indian uprising that was started by white gun-runners.

Director: Cecil B. DeMille
Stars: Gary Cooper, Jean Arthur, James Ellison
The Virginian (Video 2014)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  

Trace Adkins (The Lincoln Lawyer), Ron Perlman (TV's "Sons of Anarchy") and Brendan Penny (Ring Of Fire) star in this gritty and riveting re-imagining of the classic Western saga. Raised by... See full summary »

Director: Thomas Makowski
Stars: Victoria Pratt, Michael Adamthwaite, Trace Adkins
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A bored WWI veteran helps out a young woman, who believes her uncle is being held hostage.

Director: F. Richard Jones
Stars: Ronald Colman, Claud Allister, Lawrence Grant
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
Director: Arthur Rosson
Stars: Gary Cooper, Jack Luden, Betty Jewel
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Young Jim Hawkins is torn between his loyalty to his benefactors and his affection for lovable rogue Long John Silver in their struggle to recover a buried pirate treasure.

Director: Victor Fleming
Stars: Wallace Beery, Jackie Cooper, Lionel Barrymore
Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Three British soldiers on the Northwest Frontier of India struggle against invaders...and themselves.

Director: Henry Hathaway
Stars: Gary Cooper, Franchot Tone, Richard Cromwell
The Virginian (1962–1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The Shiloh Ranch in Wyoming Territory of the 1890s is owned in sequence by Judge Garth, the Grainger brothers, and Col. MacKenzie. It is the setting for a variety of stories, many more ... See full summary »

Stars: Doug McClure, James Drury, Lee J. Cobb
Lilac Time (1928)
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

All of those handsome young men in their flying machines are billeted in a field next to the Widow Berthelot's farmhouse in France. Her daughter Jeannine is curious about the young men ... See full summary »

Directors: George Fitzmaurice, Frank Lloyd
Stars: Colleen Moore, Gary Cooper, Burr McIntosh
The Wolf Song (1929)
Romance | Western | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

In 1840, Sam Lash heads west for adventure. He meets up with some Mountain Men, and they head for the Rockies to trap beavers and cats. In Taos he meets Lola, a beautiful Mexican girl from ... See full summary »

Director: Victor Fleming
Stars: Gary Cooper, Lupe Velez, Louis Wolheim
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
Director: Richard Wallace
Stars: Nancy Carroll, Gary Cooper, Paul Lukas
The Spoilers (1930)
Action | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Director: Edwin Carewe
Stars: Gary Cooper, Kay Johnson, Betty Compson
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Director: Richard Wallace
Stars: Gary Cooper, Beryl Mercer, Daisy Belmore


Complete credited cast:
Helen Ware ...
Victor Potel ...
E.H. Calvert ...


Molly Wood arrives in a small western town to be the new schoolmarm. The Virginian, foreman on a local ranch, and Steve, his best fiend, soon become rivals for her affection. Steve falls in with bad guys led by Trampas, and the Virginian catches him cattle rustling. As foreman, he must give the order to hang his friend. Trampas gets away, but returns in time for the obligatory climactic shootout in the streets. Written by John Oswalt <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


"You don't think I want to do this Molly? But you won't ask me to run away - " See more »








Release Date:

9 November 1929 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Agora ou Nunca  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$425,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (TV)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Gary Cooper's first all-talking film. He felt that sound would ruin him, believing his voice wasn't adequate to the task. Yet, it was "The Virginian" that turned him from a promising young leading man into a full-fledged star. See more »


Although the story spans the late 1870's through the early 1880's, Molly refers to her grandfather being killed in the Cherry Valley Massacre. As that took place in 1778, at least 100 years earlier, that seems highly unlikely. See more »


Trampas: You're liable to talk yourself into a heap of trouble, my friend.
The Virginian: Since when was I your friend, Trampas?
See more »


Referenced in The Cactus Kid (1930) See more »


Three Blind Mice
Traditional children's song
Sung by the children in school
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

An artful early talkie western
30 April 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I have to admit, the Western genre usually isn't up my alley, but this one grabbed me when I saw it as a teenager on Christmas break in 1973, and so when I saw it was for sale on DVD-R I bought a copy. My memories did not deceive me - it is still a very good Western whose technique is seemingly unencumbered by the youth of sound technology in 1929.

Some things are rather obvious Western clichés, such as the fact that the hero - The Virginian (Gary Cooper) - is always wearing a white hat and generally a light colored shirt. Trampas (Walter Huston), the villain, is always wearing a black hat and black shirt and has a kind of Yosemite Sam black mustache that is so large and cartoonish that Walter Huston is almost unrecognizable underneath it. Steve (Richard Arlen), the Virginian's friend, starts out wearing gray looking clothing. This indicates Steve is no hero but not an outright villain either - he just longs for some easy money. He wears more and more black as Trampas seduces him with the possible big scores of cattle rustling. Then there's the famous line "Smile when you say that" uttered by the Virginian to Trampas. Many people think that line originated here, but it was used in westerns before this. Among those that still exist there's 1925's "Go West" with Buster Keaton being given this command and who would comply if only his facial muscles would let him.

However, Paramount, the studio that in the early talkie era employed Lubitsch, Chevalier, and Dietrich and made so many sophisticated precodes was also capable of making one of the best of the early sound westerns. The emotions here are real - including the hanging of some rustlers, some who meet their end with courage and others who meet it with cowardice. Those hanging them are without malice - it is just something they have to do or else they'd be overrun by the lawless and starve to death.

Civilized America is symbolized by schoolmarm Molly Stark (Mary Brian), imported from Vermont to teach the pioneers' children and increasingly horrified by the savagery of the place. She just doesn't get that you can't expect some imaginary police force to come to your rescue. The romance between her and the Virginian has many parallels in "High Noon" made 23 years later.

Not to say this one is all serious though, there are plenty of laughs to be had especially in the first half of the film. Especially charming and funny is the scene where Molly and the Virginian discuss Romeo and Juliet with the Virginian giving insight into the soul of a pioneer with his interpretation of the story. Then there's Eugene Palette as a cowpoke. Palette like Cooper had been around during the silent era, but the coming of sound increased their value as performers. I'd recommend this to fans of the early talkie whether Westerns are normally of interest to you are not. This is really a good and interesting film.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Randolph Scott? donwc1996
Owen Wister's book pete2141
One of my 'Must see' flicks CrashHolly8
Discuss The Virginian (1929) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page